Inspiration

A colleague of ours recently had a loved one that passed away and had to go through the process of burying him.

Soon after, we realized that many persons around the world would be experiencing a similar situation as the death toll for COVID-19 pandemic continues to rise even now.

In an effort to ease the pain experienced in these situations, our team believes that developing a solution that improves the efficiency of the burial home's ability to process funeral arrangements, would be a rewarding endeavor to pursue.

As the COVID-19 pandemic brings many issues and complications with it, we are confident that by solving this present problem there will be one less headache for persons who have lost their loved ones, to have to worry about.

In addition, this solution is also sought after by the burial homes tasked with processing an overwhelming amount of deaths and being expected to deliver a quality service to each of their clients.

Even after the COVID-19 pandemic is long gone, the proposed application can continue to provide an easy solution to processing funeral arrangements and obituaries.

Though the current solution is being developed locally, our team hopes to someday deploy this solution worldwide.

What it does

The burial app is a web app solution that acts as a tool that handles the entire scheduling process that comes with burying your loved one.

From the point of confirmed death to the day of the funeral service, our solution handles everything, the obituary, the scheduling of the day/time and location of the service and also the location of the graveside. We even cater to your religious preferences.

The burial app takes the stress of dealing directly with the burial homes out of the equation, by allowing users to schedule their funeral arrangements from the comfort of their home or wherever they please, once an internet connection is maintained. By taking direct contact out of the equation completely, our solution aids in the current social distancing regulations enforced worldwide.

How we built it

Our team used Figma to design the initial page concepts you see included. Our stack comprises of React, Express and MongoDB. Our frontend makes use of JQuery CSS and our backend uses Node api calls to read and write to mongoDB

All payment processes will be handled through stripe API.

Challenges We ran into

Most of our team members had no experience working on a production targeted app and so learning Agile and Devops tools and techniques was a challenge right from the beginning.

Communication was also a challenge sometimes as some developers had full time jobs during the day.

The biggest challenge of them all however, was the scheduling aspect of the app. Arranging a funeral service we believe our users will be satisfied with forces us to consider a lot of options and how those options should be presented to a user. We also had to consider cancellation procedures that would not only be beneficial to our users but would also prove useful in the event our solution would be run in parallel with the current procedures funeral homes use today, which we think is very likely.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

This is the first hackathon any of us have any participated in and I am very proud we have all come this far. It is also the first time three of our team members have worked on any production targeted app.

What we learned

As a team we learned how to work together efficiently and all the tools and techniques that can help us do so effectively

We have learned just a little about what is expected from developers when working on a production targeted app, when you are working with a team and not just yourself. What I am referring to specifically is how to work with team collaborative software like git and github and how branching user workflow is important to ensure timely delivery of your end product.

Most importantly we learned a lot about planning and devops techniques that include: sprints, user stories and features.

We also learned of the existence of communications tools like slack and the documentation process, making use of tools like user workflow diagrams and figma so that all developers involved can get a crystal clear understanding about what we expect from our end product.

What's next for Burial App

After our participation in ReInvent Hacks we plan to deploy locally with the intention of one day scaling our solution globally. We realize there is a lot of work to be done from this point but with the experience gained from this opportunity we feel more equipped to face those challenges head on as a team.

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