Your Community links U.S. government workers with freelance gigs during shutdown

Categories: Community, Politics

 The "furloughed freelancer" job site was developed by information technology firm Blen Corp and business start-up incubator 1776, both based in D.C. ( As the U.S. government shutdown enters its second week, federal employees who've been left without work -- and paycheques -- are looking for alternative sources of income to make ends meet. is an online hub for government workers affected by the shutdown to find freelance gigs in and around the Washington, D.C. area.

Founded by the D.C.-based information technology firm Blen Corp and business start-up incubator 1776, the site reportedly took just 5 hours to develop using the open source tools at Drupal.

To date, it has nearly 40 gig postings that span a wide variety of industries. "Looking for someone to help create floral-related blog posts, DIY walkthroughs, & other creative content," reads a listing for local flower delivery company Bloompop.

Open Cancer Network, a "big data platform" for use in bio-medical research has three positions open; one for an iOS and web developer, one for a PowerPoint and design wizard, and one for a "Data Geek."

Almost as many freelancers have posted listings looking for work on the site.

"Drupal site building, configuration management, information architecture, user experience, tech event planning," reads the skills and interests profile for Kirsten Burgard, a furloughed program analyst at the Department of Veterans Affairs in Washington. 

Under her availability, she's written "Immediately, furloughed."

"The longer the shutdown goes on, the more jobs I think we'll see listed and the more successful freelance work we'll see being done," 1776 cofounder Donna Harris told the Daily Dot. "The reality is that for many federal workers - or those in contracting positions - being furloughed puts a fine point on the fact that the jobs they thought were secure are now just as risky as other options."

Has a shutdown or strike ever affected your employment situation? What did you do? Share your thoughts and stories below.

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