University of Virginia, $5,000
A major bottleneck in delivering essential human services in resource-poor settings is a lack of communication between communities and service partners. Community members typically lack access to internet and smartphones and are deterred by the upfront cost of calling or texting on a basic cell phone. As a result of these technological and economic barriers, community members don’t proactively message their respective service partners.
This team is developing HiComm, a communication platform that links service partners to communities-in-need around the world. HiComm provides SMS-based, free-to-end-user access to community members and a fully functional web interface for smartphone and internet users. The system’s features include group messaging, local SMS-based searches, and remote data entry.