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.