Turn the Bus Gets Selected for the Chat For Impact Summit by WhatsApp!
The month of May began with an exciting event at Turn the Bus- we were selected as one of the 30 deserving non- profit organizations amongst hundreds others globally, to attend WhatsApp’s Chat For Impact Summit which was held from the 3rd to the 6th of May 2021. In this blog, as well as the next following blogs for the month of May, we will be talking about the Summit and all that we got to learn there!
So what exactly is the Chat For Impact Summit?
The Chat for Impact Summit powered by WhatsApp is a global virtual event in partnership with Praekelt.org, a tech non-profit, the social change platform, Turn.io, and global development community media platform, Devex. This initiative aims at supporting and accelerating many non-governmental organizations’ works that provide vulnerable groups of the world with easy access to vital, oftentimes, life saving information via WhatsApp chat, hence the term ‘Chat For Impact’. Through the event, non- profits around the globe interacted and were supported and empowered on how we could better use WhatsApp’s business API feature, powered by their partner Turn.io, to create a chatbot that could together potentially impact millions of lives. The Summit consists of the initial 4 day ‘summit’ with 30 participating organisations, which we were selected to part of and a second ‘Accelerator’, which would include 10 short- listed organisations who would receive further guidance and potentially, a grant of $50,000 to use the Whatsapp Business API feature.
So much about ‘Whatsapp Business API’! What is it?
Whatsapp Business API is a service by WhatsApp that allows businesses and organisations to connect with their customers in a direct and easy way- by chatting with them on Whatsapp. In the case of the ‘Chat For Impact’ Summit, we were only non- profit organisations that collectively had the potential to reach millions of people and chat with them on WhatsApp to create socio-economic impact in the world.
What was the process of selection?
WhatsApp and Turn.io globally invited applicants to fill out a screening questionnaire that described to them each organization's mission, program and how they plan to use WhatsApp Business API. Out of hundreds of applicants worldwide, 30 were selected to attend the Summit in the first week of May 2021 and were we one of them! The next round will be an Accelerator where 10 out of the 30 of us will be chosen to create a Whatsapp Business API demo and finally, 3 organisations will be given a grant of $50,000 to apply Whatsapp Business API to create social impact.
We have our fingers crossed for the results, but no matter the outcome of the Summit, we look forward to using all that we have learnt at the Summit and are very grateful to the hosts for this opportunity!