We finally had the chance to gather together at Canberra Innovation Hub on 13Feb2020 to share observations and challenges evident from our work through Jan-Feb2020 and to hear from others in the tech community working in parallel. We used the chance to talk through some of the things we've been seeing in supporting the work of FindABed, CrisisApp and Phoenix Foundations Housing Relief.
Several key themes emerged from the night:
1. The problem is bigger than agencies have been prepared for and is clearly still overwhelming them in the response cycle;
2. Citizen sourced initiatives are abundant and will really be needed in the longer term recovery phase, particularly for NFPs relying on volunteer labour forces like BlazeAid;
3. There's a strong desire to see communities not fall into the void that can be left when first responders and emergency services leave the area after immediate crisis response ends;
4. There is a need for solutions to deliver financial transparency and traceability across all donation fronts, else agencies risk voiding their social license to operate.
Big thank you to ACT FireTech for putting the evening on, CBRIN for hosting the event and Seeing Machines for the catering.