We wanted to contribute to the theme of this hackathon: helping homelessness. There is a local government initiative that aims to give away free cellular phones to those in need, such as low income or homeless groups. We decided to take advantage of this initiative and created a texting service for the less fortunate.
What it does
Our texting service connects the homeless with organizations and people that aim to help the homeless. Those in need are able to simply text a phone number and our service will return a message with local resources. For example, if a person in need were looking for food resources, they could text "food" to our phone number and our service returns a message with local food pantries or free food events happening in their local area. Organizers who want to spread the word about their organization or event can simply visit our website to submit events to add to the text messages.
How we built it
We used React to build the front end, NodeJS for backend, firebase for our database, and used Twilio's API for the text messaging service, wit.ai for intent training.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We're proud that we got something up and running in the short amount of time that we had since this was a few of our members' first hackathon.
What's next for home++
We want to add increased functionality to our service, such as better natural language processing.