A great challenge faced by homeless people who menstruate is access to hygienic products and access to washrooms. Menstrual cups are the most sustainable period product. Menstrual cups are reusable and allow for much longer time periods between access need to washrooms (12 hours as opposed to the approximate 4-8 hours of tampons and pads). They also do not carry the risk of Toxic Shock Syndrome.
Inspired by food delivery services like Foodora and Just Eat, Urban Flow facilitates donations by relying on the local community to transport donations to the shelters.
Users can sign up to donate money, cups or time. This tears down barriers for busy individuals, for lower-income individuals, and for individuals who prefer to donate objects over funds.
Shelters can also register to receive these donations.
We built the program using Java and a lot of heart. Our back end focused on our User and Shelter Classes while our front-end provided a user-friendly sign-up interface.
The primary challenge we encountered was our inexperience with front-end work and in saving the information once the program was closed.
We are extremely proud as this was our first Hackathon as computer science students. We gained lots of experience with front-end work, with collaboration on a single programming project, and developing industry knowledge by engaging with industry mentors.
What's next? Urban Flow could be developed into an Android app and applied to any major urban center.
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