Living in Seattle, we often see homeless people and are exposed to their hardships. Additionally, multiple members of our team understand that homeless people often don't have a place to stay because shelters can fill up. Due to this issue we decided to create a platform that would allow homeless people to find shelters that have space for them.
What it does
The site displays a map with the homeless shelters in Seattle. Users have the option to click on the shelter locations to find out how many spots are left. There is an additional interface for volunteers of shelters, where they can update the number of open spots as the night goes on.
How I built it
Half of the team worked on the back end, making sure the database and login authentication works and the other half worked on the front end to create a usable interface to the user.
Challenges I ran into
An initial challenge was dealing with the scope of a project we could tackle in the time frame provided. There were a lot of ideas at the start that required focusing down to features we could accomplish in one day. Another challenging point was coming together to merge the back end and the front end, which were being developed separately for the large majority of the time.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
Eugene - We finished something that works and is actually useful. We worked together as a team well, and we all had fun. Celina - Sleeping on the floor for a long time Preston - We got to work on something that has a real application. Got to try out new technologies and learned from my besties, the best ever teammates.
What I learned
Emily - I learned that I can be helpful during hackathons even though I focus more on user-centered design than coding. Eugene - Got to learn more about web dev. Celina - Learned about working with a team of people who have better skills for hackathons.
What's next for Shelter Map:
- Add filters for users to search for specific types of shelters. These filters would include shelter features including if there are age restrictions or if the shelter is specifically for women.
- The page should auto-update so that users don't need to refresh the page to see updated numbers.
- This would be optimized for mobile devices to be more accessible to the homeless community.
- We would like to do some community outreach to encourage shelters to have volunteers updating their count data.