The Cash Learning Partnership May Bulletin edition gives details on a recent study on beneficiary accountability using IT systems. The study was conducted in Tacloban, Philippines and in Maradi, Niger. A copy of the bulletin is listed here.
In May 2014, World Vision with funding from the Canadian Government conducted a study on beneficiary accountability and the use of Last Mile Mobile Solutions (LMMS is a mobile IT platform for humanitarian service delivery).The study covered World Vision and partner agencies using LMMS in shelter, food and cash distributions in the Philippines and Niger. Using a structured interview format, which included questions relating to the Principles set out in the document: Protecting Beneficiary Privacy (CaLP, 2014), meetings were held with beneficiaries and agency staff with experience of LMMS.
Can I tell you how much I ♥ sprint reviews? A lot. Working with fields practitioners always takes me to a happy place. Sprint reviews are those special sessions where we host real-life users of the system (from all over the world – this session had people from Niger, Canada, Lebanon, Kenya, Malaysia, Philippines and the UK, representing Oxfam, CRS, WorldVision, and Medair) to showcase actual working software. No PowerPoints (hallelujah!), no screen shots – just actual, delicious, ooey-gooey working code! We picked up a number of volunteers from the Manila event (see here) and last Thursday we went through the latest additions to the code base. I’d like to take this opportunity to recap what we presented and to inform the broader community of LMME’ers (and those who are just generally interested) on Sprint 3′s features.
Since there was quite a bit of information presented, grab a cuppa, get comfy and read on. In tonight’s posting, I’d like to start by introducing you to the export capability of household data from our systems.
So I hear you saying “export shhmecport Jay – why would anyone want to export data?”
2013 ended with a flurry of activities: A major product release to the software, emergency deployments to the Philippines, support for our partners like Medair in Lebanon. Quite a bit to write about! But alas its Valentines day and I’m late for my dinner-date with my wife. So I’m going to cop out and give you re-posting of Reuters publication of IT being used in the Philippines which includes the journalist’s review of LMMS.
The only additional snippet I’ll add is that I have just returned from Cebu in the Philippines where my colleague Richard and myself had the privilege to observe how Oxfam was doing with their deployments of the LMMS system. I was over the moon with the speed at which Oxfam staff Read more
The Guardian just published an interesting article on aid effectiveness. Some highlights:
- Where and how humanitarian actions are performed – the nitty gritty of last mile work, often gets overlooked by people who aren’t in the day-to-day of operations.
- Yet this last mile is fertile ground for better, more innovative practices that have real impact on people’s lives and on the efficiencies of aid agencies.
- LMMS is profiled as a key example of technology innovation that positively impacts on the lives and dignity of people affected by disasters and on the effectiveness of operations! Its a technology designed by aid-workers and for aid-workers, with more operational partners coming together to deliver aid more effectively at scale.
- The journalist, like many newbies to LMMS, cannot say L-M-M-S and inadvertently refer to it as L-M-S-S …. the trick is to say the “M’s” really fast
Some comments to whet your appetite:
“I am very pleased and impressed with how far LMMS has come in the past few years. I wanted to give the team a great credit – LMMS is one of the few innovations that really took hold. ” (Sharon Boyle, WV El Salvador)
“From all the systems I have seen in the humanitarian industry LMMS is the most versatile in terms of features, reporting and use in remote areas where there is no internet or even electricity” (Paul Mwrichia, FPMG)
The International Data Group’s Computerworld Honors Program, honoring visionary applications of information technology promoting positive social, economic and educational change, has selected 200 Laureates for 2012 and LMMS was one of them, after being nominated by Sybase and its new parent company SAP. The program was especially competitive this year, as more than 500 IT initiatives were nominated for their innovation and benefit to society. There were ten award categories in 2012, and LMMS became one of the five Finalists in the Human Services category. The organizations and individuals associated with these projects were commemorated during the Annual Laureates Medal Ceremony & Gala Awards Evening on June 4, 2012 at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium in Washington, D.C. and honorees were presented with a medallion inscribed with the Program’s mission, “A Search for New Heroes.”
World Vision, through its use of LMMS, has been named as a Laureate in the 2012 ComputerWorld Honors Program.
One of Canada’s leading newspapers sent a reporter to interview a few of the LMMS staff just before Christmas. Below is a copy of the resulting article that was recently published by the Globe and Mail.
Mobile Technology Offers ‘Last Mile’ Aid Solution
By: Omar El Akkad
As far as mobile devices go, this one is clunky, ugly-looking and shaped a little like a brick. On the other hand, it can also save lives.
Quietly, World Vision Canada has taken the first early steps toward revolutionizing the way non-governmental organizations distribute aid to the world’s neediest. About four years ago, staff at World Vision began brainstorming solutions to one of the biggest hurdles in aid distribution: getting food and supplies through the so-called “last mile,” where an aid worker physically hands over the aid to the right recipient.
Technology can be a great equalizer among nations. Richard just sent me a superb little presentation on TEDx that speaks to this. The presentation also showcases the incredible creativity that Kenyans are doing with mobile technology. Take a look at https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=D9_6G8J6VJg for the presentation.
(Richard and Paul – see the team pages, are both Kenyans and I’m sure there hearts are swelling).
Below is an excerpt from FT that profiled innovation in the humanitarian industry. Arhmmmm … I’m biased, but nice to see LMMS included:
Disaster relief: Technology can help get aid where it is needed
By Sarah Murray
International agencies delivering emergency supplies to remote parts of the world hit by war, famine or disease, turn to anything from 1960s-era cargo planes to donkeys and camels.
Low-tech transport is often essential to delivering aid.
But innovations in communications technology are helping enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of delivery.
Given declining food aid resources, growing populations and the increasing number of emergencies, improving efficiencies in emergency food delivery is becoming more critical.