Addressing for reunification in refugee situations

Map Project meets Agnes Björn from Plan International and entrepreneur Johan Attby to explore opportunities for supporting reunification of displaced children and families with the use of Map Project addressing app.

After having been selected as one out of three winning teams of the SAS Scholarship in January, a lot has happened for Map Project.

Map Project was awarded the SAS Scholarship in January 2018.

As a reward Map Project was given the support of a mentor.

In our case this came to be Johan Attby, founder and CEO of Fishbrain, a social network for anglers with over 6 million members.

“We clicked with Johan straight away – he’s such a nice guy and so knowledgeable. Right away, when SAS said his name, I thought it was great and when we met him, we knew he was the perfect mentor for us”, says Karoline Beronius, CEO of Map Project.

Through Johan Attby, Map Project got in touch with Plan International, an NGO for children, in order to discuss scenarios in which problems that Plan International face can be solved with Map Projects solution.

Plan International and addresses

Map Project met with Agnes Björn, head of Disaster Risk Management for Plan International, Sweden. She sees the importance and relevance of our product in giving children a formal identity, via addresses to access basic services, like health care.

Björn also considers the Map Projects’ solution to have the possibility of reuniting children and parents, who were separated on the run.

In 2015 Björn was working in a refugee camp in Tanzania and recollects the story of a girl from Burundi, named Grace, who she met there. Grace came to the camp as an unattended minor. “Grace actually had an ID card but she didn’t have an address or know what part of the city she lived in […]. This made it impossible for us to go back and find her parents or relatives to see if any of them were alive. If her address had been registered in the system, we could have let her family know that Grace was okay and Plan International was looking after her”, Björn explains.

Given the current situation, with 130 million refugees all over the world, a number higher than it’s been since World War II, this has been an increasing problem.

Map Projects solution can, with an effective and simple approach, contribute to creating a safer and more secure environment for refugees both during and after they have fled.

“I would really like it if our system could help refugees when they have had to leave everything by shortening the time for them to prove their identity, reuniting them with their loved ones or getting back to how they lived before the crisis hit them”, CTO Maria Cheadle comments.

A cooperation between Plan International and Map Project would mean a milestone, not only for us on a personal level but also for the reunion of refugee families.

SAS’ magazine Scandinavian Traveller has published an article on Map Project, our mentor Johan Attby and our cooperation with Plan International in the current issue, September 2018. To read online version of Scandinavian Traveller, please click here.

About SAS Scholarship

SAS Scholarship is a program where three winners with sustainable and innovative ideas and an ambition to improve the world are paired with influential mentors. Together, each winner and mentor tailor a trip around the world. The mentors support with knowledge, experience and their network and together with SAS, unique trips and experiences are formed that can contribute to the realisation of each idea. www.sasscholarship.com

 

 

Evening with Map Project

The power of crowd

Yesterday, 60 people from more than 15 countries came together to dig deeper into challenges around addressing and what modern technology and social entrepreneurship can do about it.   We had invited to an “Evening with Map Project” and wanted to test our ideas on the crowd, see if we could find supporters and beta testers among the group, and encourage students to do their internships with us.

Currently we are performing some controlled testing of the app but are looking for android users from different countries to be part of our early testers community. To be one of the first to have it on your phone, sign up here.

We learnt a lot yesterday and had an excellent time with this fun and active crowd. At the end we challenged the participants to write their address not using street names, numbers or postal codes. We are so excited to see if the letters get there and if have a winner of landmark address descriptions in the crowd  …. Will it get there? #kombrevetfram #thepowerofcrowd

 

We are hiring

Map Project is expanding, are you one of our next colleagues? Currenly we are looking for UI/UX designer, React Native app developerFirebase Backend Engineer. Read more about our job offers and send a message to our CTO Maria, maria@mapproject.se with your resume if you are interested. Final date of application is 1st September, but we are interviewing continuously with the aim of filling the position as soon as possible. Join us and help to solve the 4 billion people challenge!

Map Project awarded Impact Maker

Map Project is among four winning startups for region East at Venture Cup Startup Competition 2018.

Map Project has been awarded the Impact Maker award at the Venture Cup regional final. This award gives us 50 000 SEK for our future development, as well as the possibility to compete in the National Final this September and a chance to win the national title Startup of the Year 2018 award. This year set a new record of the number of applications sent into Venture Cup STARTUP and Map Projet team is extremely happy to be among the winners.

Impact Maker is a special award for startups with strong social or sustainable impact.This is how the jury justified their decision to award Map Project’s team: This idea has a clear positive sustainability impact, and with great creativity the team has managed to solve an everyday problem for both individuals, companies and global sustainability movements. With a strong case, a strong team and the right timing, we believe that they have all the right qualities to succeed within their field.

We are very happy to be recognised  for our work to make addresses available to everyone and everywhere!

About Venture Cup
Venture Cup is the competition for the entrepreneurs of tomorrow. The purpose is to connect people with ideas with experts and the crowd, to ignite the creation of new businesses and empower the growth of Sweden. Venture Cup is a nonprofit organization, and open to everyone who wants to test their business ideas. http://www.venturecup.se

Map Project is through to the final in Venture Cup East 2018!

Map Project is one step closer to solve the 4 billion people challenge.

Stockholm, May 9th, 2018: Stockholm based startup, Map Project, is through to the finals in Venture Cup East startup competition 2018. Competition was fierce this year – almost 430 startups participated, but only 10 projects for each region were chosen. Yesterday, Karoline Beronius, Map Project´s CEO, presented the idea behind Map Project to the jury, who will decide who will be this year’s winner.

Map Project is developing a mobile app that allows people to digitally register a physical addresses. For many people around the world, an address is more of a description than an exact address and many people are not aware that lack of addresses is a real challenge for an estimated 4 billion people around the world. Karoline Beronius explains “Without proper addressing systems individuals cannot exercise their civil rights, get access to products and services or even explain to emergency service how to reach them. It also causes a lot of inefficiency and many business opportunities are missed.” Map Project believes having an address is a civil right, and will never charge individuals for registering and using the address. For commercial use within eCommerce and delivery service Map Project offer Addressing As a Service.

The team behind Map Project hope that the Venture Cup startup competition will lead to further opportunities and a chance to develop the solution further.  Each year startups from all over the country enter the Venture Cup Startup competition. After the pre-selection, 10 finalists on the regional level will compete for four prizes – Impact Maker, TopTech, Game Changer and Student Superstar, each prize comes with a 50 000 SEK reward. Regional finals for Venture Cup East will take place on May 24th in Konserthuset in Stockholm.

About Map Project
Map Project started out in 2016 as a project to explore the opportunity to use modern technology to leapfrog development within basic addressing infrastructure, for empowering individuals, facilitating new business opportunities and socio-economic development. In 2017, Map Project entered KTH Innovation pre-incubator and raised around 500K SEK in soft funding through VFT Funding, Vinnova and Almi. In January 2018, Map Project won the SAS Scholarship. More info: www.mapproject.se

About Venture Cup
Venture Cup is the competition for the entrepreneurs of tomorrow. The purpose is to connect people with ideas with experts and the crowd, to ignite the creation of new businesses and empower the growth of Sweden. Venture Cup is a nonprofit organization, and open to everyone who wants to test their business ideas. More info: www.venturecup.se

How does the GDPR hold up in East Africa?

Privacy, Security and Trust are important to us! We always develop with the integrity of the individual users at the centre. We have designed our system so that our users know exactly what personal information is collected and are in charge of using and sharing it. This is in compliance with the new EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which provides a strong framework for protection of the individual and their personal information.  

We wanted to check out how our development holds up in East Africa. In March, we took the opportunity to hold an event including a workshop on Privacy, Security and Trust at kLab Innovation HUB in Kigali, Rwanda. The aim was to understand how individuals approach questions of integrity and sharing of their personal information and what they expect from companies processing it.

Out of three workshops this was the busiest with more than 20 participants. The participants were very active and it was clear that integrity and data protection was important to them. Most people thought that there is no way that integrity and data security could be guaranteed and that they would have to live with that fact and would share their address anyway. A small group of people said they would not share their address as they did not trust it would be safe.

“Then we demoed our application” says Lina Modin Larsson, GDPR Compliance Officer at Map Project and explains: “several of the participants asked why we did not start by demoing. They were reassured to see that they are in charge of who can see their address.”

After some general discussion on Privacy, Security and Trust, our assumptions that the EU GDPR provides a good framework for developing a global solution handling personal information were yet again confirmed.