I've just finished reading Emma Mulqueeny's blog post about What to do when you cannot find a developer. In brief Emma says that she gets a lot of requests from organisations looking for developers to create websites and apps and that the response is that Rewired State is not a tech agency and that they neither have the resources or the remit to do that. She especially says "Obviously if you are trying to do this on mates rates or for equity then you need to move on and find another thing to do in life".
I completely agree with what Emma says in her post. It's definitely not the responsibility of Rewired State to act as a broker between devs and those that need them. That said, she recently passed on a request from Consumer Focus to me asking if I could run a project for them using coders that I knew. I set up the project with two YRS alumni and it ran for a number of weeks, delivered an excellent first release on time and earned the two young programmers great testimonials for university applications and a fair wage for their work (I chose not to take a cut in this instance).
There are developers out there that are keen to find such projects to do – especially for NGOs. The fact this drive has been around for a while is shown by fact the website created by my group in YRS 2010 (Will Work for Peanuts) was specifically designed to bring those groups together.
Rewired State is not the organisation to do this but I think there could be enough momentum for one to be created. It would need to bring together developers, project managers, designers and groups needing web / app work in a way that is realistic about what can be done, how much time can be committed from those involved and what is a fair payment (or at least be extremely up front about lack of payment).
If people are interested in discussing how this might be done drop me a line (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we'll see about starting the conversation after YRS 2012.