At OLPC this morning Rumi Chunara, PhD, a Research Fellow at HealthMap and Harvard Medical School gave an inspiring introduction to her work – http://healthmap.org/en/. It’s a live site that tracks global health issues through local submissions — tracking needs that are pressing a community most direly.
OLPC has been conducting research and fieldwork that focuses on education for children in crises, cutting across areas of crucial needs such as health and shelter. The effects of tools like Health Map and Ushahidi linked to an XO for family and kid support can have untold benefits for providing life saving information to a community. Health Maps can be localized for region and epidemic and we hope to collaborate further on what information can be provided through the forum for XO users in environments at risk across the world.
Informal learning for children is at the core of One Laptop per Child. Recently, Health Maps used their tools to track school closures in the United States as a result of the H1N1 epidemic – by linking school closures with the informal learning opportunities facilitated by the XO we aspire to facilitate uninterrupted access to education for all of the world’s children!