With the shutdown of borders to prevent the spread of Covid19, new challenges have emerged. Seasonal workers are left without work, farmers have a shortage of labor, and we will soon be in the face of a new crisis - that to our food supply. Spring harvest season is here and countries have begun talking about opening up borders again to allow seasonal workers through. The danger is, we will see a resurgence in the spread of the virus.
At the same time, the coronavirus has left many workers without employment. It has left people isolated in their homes, without the opportunity to do something active or spend time in nature.
What It Does
CropConnect links farmers in need with excited locals.
If you are a farmer in need of help, you can visit our website and post what you need help with. If you are stuck at home and hoping for some outdoor activity, you can enter where you live (this will be private!), and we show you all the farmers within a 20 km radius. This area minimizes the virus spread and maximizes individual-to-farmer matching. One day of work will be in exchange for a basket of freshly-picked produce - enough to feed you and the people at home! For longer-term contracts, we’re here to make the initial connection.
Beyond the coronavirus pandemic, we see our website being used across the globe to bring locals closer together.
Hit us up at email@example.com
How We Built It
We narrowed our project down to the most basic concept so we could build a minimum viable website. First, we made a mock-up to be used as a clear base. We used 'mockplus.com' and took advantage of online sharing tools to create the content.
Simon created the back-end with "Ruby-On-Rails" Nicole and Maxime made the front-end and the design using "Adobe Creative Suite" and "Bootstrap." Alix led with the communication and content creation efforts.
All tasks and decisions were made together using video calls and shared online documents. The videos and slides were made using "Final Cut Pro X", "Powerpoint" and the "Adobe Creative Suite".
Challenges We Ran Into
We had a lot of great ideas in the initial brainstorming stage and had difficulty narrowing our options down. Our team did not have the skillset for some ideas to come to fruition. For others, logistical planning would have been a nightmare. Eventually, we chose the idea that maximized social impact and our individual strengths.
We had to deal with a 7-hour time difference because Simon was working from Seattle, USA. This meant Zoom calls often had to occur early in the morning or late at night. We had to tag-team our efforts, with Alix, Maxime, and Nicole working during the day (CET-time) and Simon working throughout the night.
Accomplishments We're Proud Of
This is a project we really hope will come to fruition. Our team is extremely passionate about addressing the food supply crisis and we are excited to see the project through. The more we worked, the more invested we became, and the more ambitious our ideas got. For example, we have made contact with several umbrella organisations (organisation faîtière) in the area and they have expressed interest!
In the beginning, our team members did not know each other well. While there were occasional moments of tension, we worked so well together and are excited to have a debrief session over Zoom tonight.
We will continue to fine-tune our website by creating a more streamlined look and adding functionality (such as profile creation, a user database, privacy options, and a chatbox). We will also continue to build our user database by contacting umbrella organisations beyond Switzerland. Hopefully, many will be willing to collaborate with us!