APRIL 25, 2014: West-African based tech company Code Innovation, with the help of a volunteer team from Chile, Lebanon, Kenya, Senegal and the Gambia, launched a free “About Ebola” mobile application to support public health outreach and communication efforts to educate the public about Ebola viral disease.
The content for the app was adapted from information on the websites of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization. It was translated into African languages including Wolof, Jola and Swahili by a team of volunteers. More African language translations will be included as they are crowd-sourced from the wider public.
The app was created in response to WHO spokesperson Tarik Jasarevic saying, “What is really important is to inform the population of Guinea and Conakry about this disease, as this is the first time they are facing Ebola. They need to know what it is and how they can protect themselves.”
Mobile phone penetration is constantly on the rise in Africa, where Ebola virus disease has concentrated to date. The percentage of those mobile phones that are smart phones is constantly rising, with Android operating systems the dominant model.
From experience, Code knew that the social capital of people with smartphones is particularly high. Code hopes that a free and lightweight application will help to equip people with life-saving information and combat rumors that can damage public health and emergency efforts.
The “About Ebola” app is free to download for Android via the Google Play store, and soon will be on the Apple Store as well (there is a two-week waiting period to publish apps through Apple).
The start-up Snapp.cc created the app for free on their mobile application builder. The project took 11 days.
You can download the free Android app here: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=cc.snapp.aboutebola
You can download the free Apple app here: http://codeinnovation.com/2014/04/releasing-our-about-ebola-app-in-african-languages/
For more information, contact: Elie Calhoun, Code Innovation, email@example.com