“Development is too often a top down process, with communities neither consulted nor empowered with information to enact change at the local level. As a result, accountability is weak, precious donor funding is not maximised, and communities lack ownership of key public goods.”
Concerned by the issue of untapped feedback from communities and particularly the youth, UNICEF has developed a free mobile communication system for youth in Uganda to share local information and their own opinions on public and grassroots problems.
The Ureport SMS platform is a user-centred social monitoring too
l, designed for young Ugandans to strengthen community-led development and citizen engagement. Its mission is to inspire action within local communities to share the responsibility of creating a better environment for everyone, and to let leaders know what’s going on and what people want.
- Weekly SMS messages and polls to and from a growing community of Ureporters
- Regular radio programs that broadcast stories gathered by Ureport
- Newspaper articles that publish stories from the Ureport community
With its large user base (over 240,000 young people have enrolled) Ureport enables information to flow conveniently among its community members who are able to speak out and feedback. Consequently, Ureport not only generates knowledge but also creates a network among empowered young locals who can work for change in their communities themselves.
Watch a video explaining how the service works:
The full case study can be found at UNICEF Innovation website.
For further information se http://tech.transparency-initiative.org/hollie-gilman-ureport-local-issues-driving-mobile-participation/