Problem statement

In 2019, a woman in Ohio reported an incident of domestic abuse by pretending to order a pizza. The discretion was imperative because the abuser was in the same room as her. After further research, we learned that domestic violence reports increase during large sporting events. As we proceeded throughout cmd-f, we asked ourselves, how might we provide victims of domestic violence a discrete way of reporting abuse?


We learned that during sporting events, sports enjoyers' plans typically involve food. The takeout application Deliveroo says that orders on their app rose on average by 25% during the hour prior to each of England’s Group Stage kickoffs, and the team’s final group match Vs. Belgium they claimed was their “busiest ever dinner service for a Thursday night.” We decided to amalgamate these two spaces to create a solution for victims to request for help, disguised in the form of a typical takeout delivery application to not risk the suspicion of their abusers.

Introducing Chow Now

Chow Now is an application that collects the necessary information from domestic violence victims in order to quickly inform their emergency contacts when the victim needs help. The victim can request for help in a way that does not raise the suspicion of their abuser, because the user can disguise the application to appear like a typical takeout delivery application.

How we built it

Chow Now was designed with Figma and Adobe Illustrator and designed with images from Freepik. As for our technology stack, we built our demo with React Native, Twilio, JavaScript, and Google Firebase.

Challenges we ran into

Christina never worked with React Native before, and she spent nearly eight hours trying to figure out how to import fonts in a React Native project. She never figured it out.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

Christina believes that she learned a lot from the hackathon and made a pretty cool Figma prototype. She's beginning to get the hang of React Native and thinks that it's pretty cool (although sometimes unintuitive...) We also believe that we achieved a lot during the hackathon despite only being in a team of two.

What we learned

Christina wrote the syntax for a ternary operator and learned what states were in React for the first time.

What's next for Chow Now

We'd like to add more features such as sending phone calls, because text-to-911 is not supported in Canada; however, it's supported in other regions such as the States.

Best Design and Best Figma Prototype

When designing a product, we wanted to design for a problem space with a clear need. From our research, we deduced that there was a need for a discrete solution for domestic violence victims to get the help that they need. When considering their user experience, we took careful consideration of the following usability heuristics:

  • Match between system and the real world. The technicalities of Chow Now can be highlighted as the backend was fairly complex; however, our users are likely not to be concerned with the inner workings and the technical jargon of the app. When conversating with our users through UX writing, we made sure to speak in a friendly and conversational tone.
  • User control and freedom We knew that users of this app would need user control and freedom. At times, their lives literally depends on it. The user can toggle between different states to disguise the application as a typical takeout app to not raise suspicion from their abusers.

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