Frequently asked questions
How do your users charge their phones?
The truth is, the majority of homeless citizens already have a phone. Some put it as high as 70%. This makes sense if you think you were about to enter a homeless state, the first thing you'd keep with you is your phone.
As a result, there already exists a great infrastructure to charge including, free charging boxes, food banks, churches and long life power banks to name a few.
BT is doing a great job in London, offering free wifi and charging outdoors across the UK via Link UK programme https://www.inlinkuk.com/
Where will my donations go?
We've got this far with the support of some great organisation and volunteers. However if we're going to scale and make our support we need funding for the following areas.
1. Full time staff to onboard and support users.
2. Development resources to add new features and ensure platform is secure.
3. Legal and admin support to ensure we can strike partnerships and deals at speed.
How does your platform help lift users out of homelessness?
We're not in the business of just ensuring our users simply sustain their situation, but rather thrive!
Our sole KPI is how many users we can lift out of homelessness and how quickly this can be done.
To achieve this we work organisations and charities already doing great work and use our data to help speed up the journeys for future participants.
How will you fund yourself moving forward?
This was one of the main things we had to cut from the crowdfunding video to avoid information overload.
We wanted to be different from day one and hopefully this is the last time we have to crowdfund.
In the donor app we built a feature called 'watch an ad'. We realise that fantastic people like you are exactly who social brands are dying to engage with. We also realise many of you may not have the resources to donate directly to a homeless user. With this feature you can click to watch a video ad from a socially minded company (think of a new organic, zero emission sandwich from Subway). This would then trigger a payment of £0.50 from the brand directly to the charity, helping us cover operational cost and ensure 100% of donations go directly to our users.
Which areas will you cover?
Initially London, simply because that's where we're currently based. However our goal is to scale across the UK as quickly as we possibly can before helping role out the model worldwide.
What phone's do you give your users?
We give users an Alcatel Pixi 4. We get them for approximately £20. Crazy, right? even has a front facing camera. We think this illustrates how far technology has come. In fact, in Africa, more people have a phone than have access to clean water.
Even if a user has a phone, we try and give them one so that everyone is on the same platform and version of software. Reduced a lot of headaches.
What about mobile data?
We're talking to Telco operators about some exciting things. One of them would be zero rating our users sim cards, which would mean that a small amount of data could be accessed for free to user the platform.
Luckily, technology has also advanced to help bridge the connectivity issue. Our maps are downloaded directly to the phone and can be used offline. Plus most highstreets, shopping malls and train/tube stations now have free wifi for the public to access.
BT in London are also making great progress in providing free wifi and charging to everyone. Take a look below:
How do you prevent anyone from just downloading the app?
The homeless user app is not available to download. We sit down personally with each user to ensure all their details are gathered, they are commited to working with us and our partners to enhance their situation and make sure we leverage their information to create a personalised plan.
Initially as we launch, we will be receiving our referrals from charities, such as food banks and hostels, but in the long term will allow you to reccomend people you know.