Our team was inspired by the need for a service to help victims of domestic violence and sexual assault to build local communities, both online and offline. We have noticed the increasing cases of domestic violence - particularly towards women - since COVID-19 and wanted to build a web application that would both support and empower women.
What it does
Our web application is an online platform that fosters a safe-space and community support for women who are affected by domestic violence. Users will not be required to register or sign in as they can freely navigate through each page anonymously. Users will be able to share their story and submit it. Once their story is submitted, they can go through the Search page and view an interactive map with markers that displays locations of other shared stories.
How we built it
Challenges we ran into
- As the entire team is made up of beginners, it was hard to learn as we went. Since we were unfamiliar with the tools and languages, we had to do a lot of side research to determine what to use, how we should build and collaborate together, and how we are going to integrate our code together. Especially under time pressure, we had to constantly adjust the size of our project according to our progress.
- Our initial challenge was considering user authentication in order to share stories and connect with others. Due to time limitations, we omitted this and let users have full access to the web app pages.
- We faced challenges in finding the most optimal backend server and database to store user generated stories and locations. We originally considered building a Flask application with a SQL database, but found JS local storage to be quick and more efficient for our needs.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We are proud to have built a minimum viable product as a group of beginners. It was rewarding for us as hackers and women ourselves to make something that would benefit women. Although our outcome has rooms for improvement, we put a lot of time and effort to learn new skills in such a short period of time, and we learned much more than just being able to write code - how to work as a team, how to work under a time pressure, how to work remotely, and that we could support female empowerment without being superheroes.
What we learned
We learned the importance of coming up with feasible yet accessible product plan from the start. Assessing our skill level appropriately and splitting up work evenly are keys to success. We also learned that we need to do a lot of research to learn about new technologies and examine which one should be used when.
What's next for LocalAid
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