Young people hack into a world of good in Bosnia and Herzegovina

"We worked hard to come up with the best possible result."

UNICEF
Mladi ljudi iz Bosne i Hercegovine stvaraju hakovanjem bolji svijet 1
UNICEF

08 March 2019

It’s a simple idea with powerful potential in preventing gender-based violence. Wear a bracelet that can send an SMS alert if a risk arises.

The idea was one of several developed by high-school students alert to the possibilities of innovating for change. They took part in a UN Women-sponsored hackathon in December 2017, with the two winning teams supported to advance their innovations through technical development, a business plan and a marketing strategy.

The “TraceBrace” team won first place for the bracelet after a marathon 48 hours of hacking solutions to end violence. Six friends from the city of Tuzla who love tinkering with technology and had been peer educators in the local Be a Man club – an initiative to engage men and boys in accelerating gender equality – came up with the concept.

All young men, team members stress: “We’re feminists! Our end goal is to turn off the violence against women firstly in our country and then in the whole world!”

IT girls UN building
UNICEF

They observed that most existing tech solutions involved online platforms and helplines for women and girls facing violence. But there was nothing that could trigger an immediate response and stop violence before it starts.

By working with UN Women and Networks, a business start-up accelerator, the team has finetuned its initial prototype, connected with other startups, and is now on the way to creating a company and starting production. Cooperation with Viber has led to discussions around integration in its instant messaging app. Edhem ‘Eddie’ Čustović, a leading champion of start-ups, has backed development with his BH Futures Foundation.

A group of female high school students from Zenica and Tuzla took second prize in the hackathon for the first online platform providing peer support and information on gender-based violence specifically to young girls. The site features quizzes, news and blogs, and will be promoted on television as well as through visits to high schools. Team member Nedžla Karalić, 15, says, “Our aim is to raise awareness among our peers and initiate change in our society. UN Women believed in our idea and gave us a moral support that was a strong motivator. We worked hard to come up with the best possible result.”

They observed that most existing tech solutions involved online platforms and helplines for women and girls facing violence. But there was nothing that could trigger an immediate response and stop violence before it starts.

By working with UN Women and Networks, a business start-up accelerator, the team has finetuned its initial prototype, connected with other startups, and is now on the way to creating a company and starting production. Cooperation with Viber has led to discussions around integration in its instant messaging app. Edhem ‘Eddie’ Čustović, a leading champion of start-ups, has backed development with his BH Futures Foundation.

A group of female high school students from Zenica and Tuzla took second prize in the hackathon for the first online platform providing peer support and information on gender-based violence specifically to young girls. The site features quizzes, news and blogs, and will be promoted on television as well as through visits to high schools. Team member Nedžla Karalić, 15, says, “Our aim is to raise awareness among our peers and initiate change in our society. UN Women believed in our idea and gave us a moral support that was a strong motivator. We worked hard to come up with the best possible result.”

it girls grupna
UNICEF