The problem your project solves
There are more than 10 million Roma citizens around Europe. The Roma is the most excluded non-migrant ethnic minority in Europe, being heartbreakingly affected by the pandemic and all its more immediate and long term consequences in the fields of health, education, housing, and employment. Thus, the transition into online represents additional challenges to the existing ones. If solidarity networks and strong social ties have been the traditional community response to basic social problems, social distancing has got even drastic consequences for most Roma families.
The solution you bring to the table
To create, develop and strengthen the Virtual EU Roma Community, a pan-European online community that will enhance the Roma to connect with each other at the local, regional, national and international level while providing free and quick access to information about services and resources (health, education, housing, employment, civic engagement, FAQ) in their territories. This will be done by creating a user-friendly App, free of charge, which will especially take into account common limitations derived from low connectivity.
The project can be scaled up very easily and with little funds.
What you have done during the weekend
Discuss, agree and develop the idea of the Virtual EU Roma Community App, focusing on four specific aspects: Technology and technical requirements for app development; Governance and business plan; Code of ethics; and Dissemination and impact plan.
The solution’s impact to the crisis
- Strengthen the deep sense of community among the Roma people by enhancing their engagement in online settings, promoting their values as solidarity, connecting more Roma from their neighbourhoods, and also from larger areas;
- To be a platform to share truthful, and scientifically and ethically rigorous information, with Roma, contesting misinformation.
- Contribute to introduce the necessary technology and help in all Roma homes, thus contributing to overcome the digital gap.
- Help Roma families to easily connect with a network of "check points" in their communities, individuals who are nodes of information about services and resources.
- Offer user-friendly, easy to use solutions that are inclusive of people with varied needs.
- Disseminate correct information on the pandemic and other official information that needs to reach the masses.
The necessities in order to continue the project
- Each Roma Home = 1 tablet (or similar electronic device) + 1 WiFi connexion
- Creation of an App, free of charge, to develop the virtual community that has video conference option (e.g.: direct link to Zoom or other video-conference platforms), voice recognition (some Roma are illiterate or has poor technology skill), and which is intuitive and with an easy interface (some Roma are illiterate or has significant technology skill gaps).
- Accessible even in regions with low bandwidth internet connection.
- The network of "check points", which will be volunteers organised on the ground.
- Democratic and egalitarian leadership to ensure that Roma is participating in the management, development, and assessment of the #EURomaCommunityChannel, and contents are truthful, and scientifically and ethically rigorous.
- Governance and management plan
The value of your solution(s) after the crisis
The value of this project is oriented to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
- Roma communities transitioning from offline to online settings, engaging relationally in such channels and coming up with innovative solutions to cope with employment, education, health, housing and other needs.
- Fosters social cohesion and is a platform that can have uptake by government bodies, educational environments and also varied social, cultural, and health domains.
You can all try out the EUROMACOMMUNITYCHANNEL APP clicking the links below