How we are making the world a better place

How we are making the world a better place

Our Fridays are different… Fridays are Investment Time day! What does that mean? On Friday we invest in ourselves as a company, we try new things, share knowledge and address shared needs. Anything from improving or Hawkpost, develop our internal tools, contribute to open source or even write blog posts is considered Investment Time.

Causa is our most recent internal project to be born through Investment Time.

Nine months ago when the refugee crisis was on every television and newspaper, one of our amazing designers, Alexandra Grancho, shared her concern and her will to help those who were being forced to leave their country. We all watched lots of people arriving in Europe with almost anything, some other never arrived at all. Despite all the efforts from several non-governmental organizations (NGOs), they don’t have enough resources to help refugees. From donating to volunteering, they made several appeals.

So it came the idea…

Alexandra’s idea was simple: gather in one place (online) all the requests from NGOs in order to inform people of the needs and encourage them to make donations or volunteering work. Everyone at Whitesmith loved it and wanted to help to develop this platform!

After some brainstorming to understand the way the international NGOs were working we decided to start by creating the platform for the national NGOs that help refugees and other causes. This way we could easily reach more organisations, understand their needs and create a platform that will really help them developing their activities.

The goals were set:

  • help Portuguese NGOs to share their needs;
  • increase donations and volunteering work;
  • inform people where they can donate or do volunteering work.

First drafts and scribbles of Causa

At Causa, people or NGOs can submit requests for donations or volunteering work in different fields of activity. To submit the request it is mandatory to fulfill a form with NGO’s information (name, short description, address, and website), goods or volunteering work needed and campaign duration to ensure everyone can help in the needed time. Later, the submission will be validated by our team. How simple was that!?

First drafts and variations of the logo

As we already mentioned, the platform will start focusing on Portuguese NGO’s so the name, domain, and all the copy will be in Portuguese (sorry for not having the translation).

We started thinking about words related to charity (donation, give, volunteer, organisations) and with the goals of the platform.

Several ideas were tested before we finally decide for “Causa” which means Causes. This platform is the place where different causes will be represented. Simple, direct and clear, just like the idea itself.

The logo was drawn by Alexandra, a beautiful and different heart that represents really well the motto of this project.

Image of the logo

The ground idea was to represent the many ways a heart or simply a person will help can unfold to extraordinary things at once, and those things create something unique.

This is Causa

The platform is live and ready to receive the requests and to be visited for those who want to help. In donations page, it is possible to search different NGOs and filter by goods, date or city. The same way, in the volunteer page it is also possible to filter by service, frequency, and city.

We are now contacting NGOs to show the platform and ask for feedback. It is all about spreading the word and have people visiting the website to help the organisations.

Portugal and forest fires

Since Saturday, 6th of August, multiple forest fires have been deteriorating in Portugal. As of today, over 366 forest fires have been registered with the national authorities, threatening homes and forcing people to flee.

Forest fires map

Due to this calamity, we decided to use Causa to aggregate all the help requests for firefighters and for the people that lost their home. This way, everyone can know what is needed in different parts of the country and how they can help.

Requests to help fire brigades and population

Final thoughts

This is our way to help our community, we used our resources to do something that we believe that can make the difference and help those who are in need. If you want to help us, don’t forget to spread Causa. And help an NGO to make the World a better place!

#product #product-development

Maria João Ferreira

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