Crisis Camp Ottawa

February 05, 2010 10:40 ET

Technology + Humanitarian Relief Working for Haiti: Crisis Camp now IN Canada

MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - Feb. 5, 2010) - CrisisCamps are in-person meetings of a new grassroots movement called CrisisCommons. We bring together a network of IT professionals as well as academia, non-profits, companies, entrepreneurs, community associations and government officials drawn together by a call to service.

Other Canadian Crisis Camps: Ottawa, Montreal, Toronto and Calgary

Reserve your seat for Crisis Camp Ottawa here: You are invited to Crisis Camp Ottawa, Feb 6, 10 AM - 6PM The Code Project 246 Queen Street Second Floor

"We are witnessing a transformation in how an average citizen can participate in the crisis response effort" says CrisisCommons co-founder Noel Dickover. Previously you could only send money; now, you can directly help in the response. An existing social network of national and international first responders, Web 2.0 developers and NGOs had been established, so responding immediately is just a matter of galvanizing existing relationships. CrisisCamp concept was born to unite communities seek common ground and cultivate innovation in the use of technology for mobility and efficiency during crisis.

WASHINGTON: Hundreds of CrisisCamp volunteers have gathered in cities around the world to collaborate on information technology projects in support of disaster relief for post-earthquake Haiti.

Crisis Camp Haiti volunteers spent thousands of hours developing maps of currently existing roads, hospitals and refugee camps in Haiti to aid rescue workers in assisting survivors.

CrisisCamp volunteers have also been vital in helping track missing persons reports from around Haiti. Working to replace duplicate systems, CrisisCamp has developed, which is currently tracking nearly 40,000 individuals. Non-technical volunteers have been instrumental as well. A project requested by the United Nations has generated a definitive list of news sources covering the Haiti earthquake.

CrisisCamp projects that are being expanded and improved include the We Have, We Need project, which is being hailed as the "Craig's List" for Haitian disaster relief that provides lists of both needed and available supplies and services.

Development on these projects has continued even after CrisisCamp events through open-source online collaborative tools, such as MediaWiki, Drupal and Internet Relay Chat. CrisisCamp creations are released under a free license, allowing anyone to use copy or modify any volunteer efforts. CrisisCommons is continually accepting crisis technology support requests from government and NGOs, solutions for which are handled by a rapidly expanding corps of volunteers.

All of the applications and project descriptions can be found on the CrisisCommons Web site Listed on the site are "Simple Tasks Anyone Can Do" with screencasts and step-by-step instructions to teach the Internet novice how to participate.

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