• There are many help platforms available online.
  • However, according to a report published by the Office of National Statistics, 10% of 55-64 years old and 24% of 64+ years old do not use the internet in the UK.

  • People in need who have no internet access - Difficult for them to know where and how they can request for help

  • People who can assist, e.g. established charities, newly set-up local volunteer groups - Difficult for them to identify and reach out to those who need help

What it does

  1. User (e.g. senior citizen) makes assistance request by SMS.
  2. Charity/volunteer group approves the request in Google Sheet database.
  3. The interface of the volunteer app is automatically updated.
  4. Volunteer responds to request on the volunteer app.
  5. Charity/volunteer group approves the volunteer.
  6. Volunteer delivers the care package to users.

How we built it

We deliberately chose a low-code way to develop HeroHelper to keep the maintenance minimal for charity/volunteer group.

  • Twilio Autopilot is used to converse with the user
  • Google Sheets is used to host the data
  • Glide Apps is used to add a UI for volunteers to respond to requests
  • AWS is used to host the code to receive JSON from Twilio and append the Google Sheets

Challenges we ran into

We encountered errors deploying to gcp - that took a significant amount of time to resolve. Also issues with Twilio Functions initially.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

  • A nicely designed of the website
  • A functional backend to capture assistance requests
  • Community outreach on the product
  • Simplicity of product
  • Great team collaboration.

What we learned

  • Ways to use Twilio smartly and productively.
  • Communicate with the team with different preferences and styles of management.

What's next for HeroHelper

  • Look for funding
  • Look for charities which would like to use HeroHelper
  • Adapt the offering for different use cases (australian fires, locust swarm east africa etc)

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