This no-code app to share COVID-19 resources was designed in two hours and saw 2 lakh users in 5 days
With the entire country reeling under the second wave of COVID-19, we need all the help we can get.
For Hyderabad-based Vensy Krishna, the virus hit home. When her mother was stricken by the virus, she spent a lot of time searching for hospitals and beds in the city but found the situation dire and alarming. Luckily, her mother could recover from home.
Vensy, who had dabbled in the tech industry for a little while before moving to the education sector, decided to collate all the COVID-19 resources in the city.
“My friend Medha, like a lot of others, started a spreadsheet to list resources available in Hyderabad on April 19. I joined in her efforts and decided to take it further with an app,” she says.
Using @glideapps, Vensy designed a no-code platform hydcovidresources.com in just two hours on April 20 and launched it the same afternoon. In the first 12 hours, the app saw 10,000 users and by the end of five days, its users have jumped to two lakhs.
The app is simple to use and navigate.
Vensy explains, “It’s a progressive web app, which means you don’t have to download anything. You can load it from your browser on your smartphone or on a computer. You can even pin it to your home screen. In essence, you don’t have to give us any of your data,” she says.
All resources on a single platform
Hydcovidresources.com caters to different needs — sources for oxygen, plasma, Remdesivir, ambulances, meal services, blook banks, and more. You can find leads from the different categories available on the app.
Vensy works with her friends Medha Kadri and Abhishek Anirudhan, and a team of 30 volunteers who are engaged in calling and verifying leads sourced from different platforms. “We now have a form where service providers can provide their details,” she adds.
The app also features a common section where people can actually talk about their experiences with a particular provider. The Doctor’s page allows doctors to sign up and volunteer their services — paid or free — and includes fees wherever applicable.
Vensy and Abhishek manage the app in real time while Medha is in charge of the volunteers and works on the content.
Vensy says the core team has had very less sleep in the past week.
“When you look at the number of cases, there is so much work more to be done. The infrastructure is crumbling, there are so many people that need help, and we want to also help the government tackle this. We cannot just sleep knowing that,” she says.
The self-taught developers are open to helping anyone replicate the same in their own city. Apart from teaching people how to do it, they can also provide them with the same template so that things get moving quickly.
“The need of the hour is to empower communities to come up with their own solutions because different cities have different problems and localised solutions are the need of the hour. We cannot scale externally now because we are busy with Hyderabad. We have organised and also recorded a webinar on how others can replicate the same model,” she says.
In less than three days, actor Priyanka Chopra shared information about hydcovidresources.com on her Instagram page and so did a number of celebrities and influencers from Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
“We are really grateful for the kind of support and hope more people in other cities can be impacted by our model,” Vensy says.