Google Releases ‘Crisis Info Hub,’ Providing Hyper-Localized Info for Refugees
They’re also looking for Arabic and German translators.
As Europe's refugee crisis shows no signs of improving, Google is continuing to look for ways it can use its money and its resources to help. As a followup to their earlier donation-matching drive, which raised 10 million euros in just 48 hours, Google is announcing a new open-source project intended to aid migrants.
Many refugees carry smartphones, and are extremely dependent on them to make the high-stakes and dangerous trip. Google's "Crisis Info Hub" is a wealth of "hyperlocal" information for refugees, containing advice on where to find lodging, how to conduct their journey, and where to seek medical attention. Google is also partnering with NetHope, an NGO collective, to improve connectivity along the migration routes. The info crisis hub is already live in the Greek island of Lesbos, with more locations coming soon.
And that's not all. Google also established Arabic as their 28th language for instant visual translation, as many refugees entering Europe speak Arabic and are unfamiliar with the language spoken in the countries they pass through. Google is also asking the global community to pitch in, looking for Arabic and German speakers to help improve translation via the Google Translate Community.
Google also states that it is not done looking for ways to help. It will be interesting to see what they come up with next, and if they set an example for similarly well-connected companies.