15 February 2019

Innovative Technology Speeds Up Tracing of Children

It has been three years, but the day a 7.4 magnitude and tsunami shook the province of Central Sulawesi in Indonesia, killing over 4,000 people and injuring at least 10,000, is still etched in the minds of those who survived them. A few days after the disaster, the province was a mass scene of death and devastation. There were body bags and mass…, Primero: a digital app that traces and reunifies children with their families, One of UNICEF’s early responses to the disaster was to aid the Government of Indonesia in family tracing and reunification. It did so first by setting up posts in 12 affected areas for people to seek and offer information on missing children—and as designated safe spaces for children to play. Within a few days after distributing posters and…, Technology efficacy, Since adopting Primero, UNICEF’s first priority was to train field workers including social workers from the Ministry of Social Affairs on how to use its Indonesian language web and mobile versions. After a few months, these workers had become adept at collecting and entering a child’s basic data including how she or he was separated from her or…, Other UNICEF-supported tech innovations for use in emergencies, In addition to Primero, another UNICEF-supported tech innovation deemed successful is the U-report. Launched a few years ago by UNICEF Indonesia, it is a Twitter-based communication platform that has enabled hundreds of thousands of young people in Indonesia to voice their opinions on various development issues and convey them to policy makers. As…, Challenges ahead, While tech innovations such as Primero and U-Report have clearly proven to be time-saving and efficient in emergency situations, distributing them to every natural disaster-prone location across the country remains a challenge. Infrastructure upgrade and training as part of prevention measures also requires ongoing resources and funding, which…, How You Can Help, Thanks to the generous contributions of individual donors, UNICEF and their partners have been able to work with tech institutions and entrepreneurs, health and child protection officials and workers, emergency task forces and members of local communities across Indonesia to help them track missing children and reunite them with their families.…