This story inspires me and it keeps me believing in the future.
A group of primary school kids in Calcutta realised that the slum in which they live wasn’t on Google maps anywhere. Their home simply didn’t exist in the eyes of officialdom, which meant they didn’t get access to government services such as running water and vaccinations.
The school kids took it upon themselves to add themselves to the map. They went door to door and took photos of the entire area. Eventually, they were put on the map and recognised by local government.
While one result was great evidence of the amazing outcome that can be achieved by bringing together young people with technology with a community goal in mind, the thing that left me speechless was that this meant polio vaccination rates doubled in the local area. Do we understand what that means to the people there? It means health and life – all down to kids with a camera and creative genius! I am taken aback each time I recall this.