As the COVID-19 crisis unfolds, our lifestyles are endless transforming. During these trying times many products and services like Instacart have surfaced that help us adapt to these changes. Instacart is an American company that operates a grocery delivery and pick-up service. They specialize in delivering groceries from local stores. A recent poll shows that 60 percent of 18-24 year olds surveyed had already increased the frequency they use delivery services during COVID-19. The 35 to 54 year old age group had the biggest increase in frequency, with 40 percent saying they would do so during COVID-19 .In the midst of changing guidelines and expectations, having access to favorite foodservices and delivery items is offering customers comfort during this troublesome time. The efforts of services like Insta-cart have inspired us to develop a web app that enables volunteers (free of charge) to aid individuals in their community by picking up and delivering their groceries.

What it does

Web App
  • Web app that enables volunteers to aid individuals in their community by picking up and delivering their groceries.
  • incentivices volunteers by providing official documentation of their volunteer efforts that they can use for school/program requirements
  • incentivize volunteers by partnering with multitudes of companies (sponsors) that provide users with awards that can be mailed to their addresses. A wide variety of prizes that address the wide range of interests of our users (volunteers).
  • Locals do not have to go through the hassle or pay extra for food delivery services because of COVID-19.

How we built it

Web App
  • Figma - Used to create prototype and ideation (click the link to view our design)
  • Maps JavaScript API - Used to obtain user location
  • Devisee - Utilized for authentication when users signed in/created an account
  • Ruby on Rails - Used framework to simplify web app building process
  • PostgreSQL - database for products and users
  • Stripe - Utilized to accept payments and manage business
  • Webpacker -Utilized to manage and bundle js code *Cloudinary - Used for easy upload and storing of files
  • Coding Languages - Ruby,CSS, Python, HTML,JavaScript

Challenges we ran into

  • Working remotely was a burdensome challenge for us because we could not coordinate as well as if we were working together in person and in the same time zones. To keep up to date, we needed to communicate effectively via Slack.

  • Integrating the APIS's and working with databases

  • Since so many different individuals were working on the project simultaenously, it was a challenge to keep our web app looking cohesive and concise. To mantain a consistent style, we made mocks up of our web app utilizing Figma before we began coding. This enabled all of us to be on the same page.

  • Getting our domain to work for the website

Accomplishments that we are proud of

  • Overcoming the above challenges was our greatest accomplishment.
  • Utilizing the knowledge we gained from the workshops to create our application
  • For some of us this was our first hackathon, that is an achievement within itself.
  • Being able to work together and produce something despite our major time zone differences and limited time.
  • Being able to bring all of our unique educational backgrounds to produce a product.
  • Learning that this is a novel idea that others have not created before.

What we learned

  • More about making sites functional, interactive , and appealing to the eye by integrating libraries.
  • This hack-a-thon enabled us to improve our coding skills and experiment with many new things which some of us were not very familiar with before like APIS, Github, and Databases.

What's next for MealMate

We hope to expand MealMate to encompass more customers and volunteers, as well as gain more sponsorships to provide greater opportunities for our volunteers.

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