Google, TOYP, and SRI Lanka launch ‘Project Biz’ to bring relief to flood-affected areas
Google, ToYP, SRI Lankan telecom company ToY, and a number of tech companies including Facebook, Microsoft, and Twitter are partnering to help fund a new online program aimed at connecting those in need to the country’s vulnerable population.
The initiative, which is called Bizmeet (for Business), is an effort to connect people in need in flood-hit regions of Sri Lanka to their nearest mobile network, as well as connecting them to services and resources.
The project is one of many in the world aimed at helping flood-stricken regions, such as those in India, to become more resilient.
Bizmethes goal is to connect flood-relief volunteers, businesses and the public with a broad range of relief resources, including food, clothing, shelter, and other necessities.
Bethany Hurd, the head of Global Solutions for Disaster and Emergency Management at TOYP (which will launch the project in Sri Lanka in the coming weeks), told the Wall Street Journal that she hopes the project will “change the lives of people.”
“This is about connecting people to the resources that they need and making sure that they’re not left behind,” she said.
ToY, a Silicon Valley-based tech company, is also participating in the effort.
In a statement to TechCrunch, the company said that the goal is “to help improve the lives and well-being of people impacted by flooding and drought,” including those in flood affected areas.
“In a recent project, we connected the flood-ridden communities in our home country to the internet to help people find resources,” the company added.
“The project also helped to help us connect with community leaders to develop community outreach programs and deliver social support services.”TOYP is a company that specializes in connecting companies to disaster-affected communities and developing programs that connect people to local and regional partners.
The company is currently working with The University of Oxford to develop a mobile app for the flood victims.
ToYS spokesperson Chris Williams told TechCrunch that “Biz Meet is an opportunity for the public to help connect with flood victims and help businesses connect with customers.
ToYS believes that to create more resilient communities, businesses should take advantage of these opportunities.”
ToY and Google are also part of a coalition of tech, disaster relief, and social service providers and philanthropists that will deliver 1,500 mobile phone subscriptions to flood victims in Sri Lankan flood-struck areas.
ToYP will also host a two-day conference this summer to help flood victims find solutions to their problems, including training them in basic disaster recovery skills.
The conference will take place in the capital of Colombo, Sri Lanka.
The launch of the project marks ToY’s second major project to connect disaster-relieved communities.
In October, the startup launched a partnership with the Red Cross to deliver free disaster relief supplies to flood affected communities in India.