Dear supporters and members of CartONG,
2016 marks the 10th anniversary of our NGO, and with it, we continue to follow our strategy for the development of the association.
Our team has recently moved into a new and bigger office in Chambéry. With these changes has come the arrival of 4 new staff members (Violaine Doutreleau, Maxime Delobelle, Nelly Bachelot and Fanny Bas), and two interns (Thibault Krebs and Camila Muñoz-Jiménez, the latter in charge of the GeOnG forum).
Furthermore, CartONG has attended the Coordination Humanitaire et Développement as well as Coordination Sud’s general assembly for the first time - this was an occasion to gain more visibility, to explain the way we work and our expertise as a “Humanitarian2Humanitarian” NGO, as well as to meet potential new partners.
The GeOnG conference that we will host in October (more information below) will in fact give us an opportunity to look back on the history of CartONG; we are preparing different visual supports, explaining what is Humanitarian Cartography (a video made by our volunteer Joanna Roussillon), as well as to show our experiences over the past decade.
We are also organizing a public event on the Tuesday evening, with the objective to increase our local visibility as well as make this anniversary a milestone in CartONG’s history. We are counting on all of you, members, supporters, partners and friends, for your full engagement to help us with the content, logistics and coordination of the conference, as well as to see you make part and enjoy of this great event.
Camila and the team possibly have contacted you already or they will do it rather soon, but if you want to contact us directly, feel free to!
Finally, we have been working these last months on a complete reshaping of our website. We have been too busy over the past semester to be able to finalize all the new contents, but you can already discover the new design, as well as a streamlined presentation of the tools and services we offer to our partners: http://cartong.org/what-we-do
Have a good summer everyone, and we’ll get in touch after the holidays to work on the pending details before we gather on the 17th, 18th and 19th of October 2016 at the Manège Convention Centre in Chambéry!
GeOnG 2016 – Registrations open!
As you already now, we are hosting for the fifth time the GeOnG, in Chambéry (1h from Geneva), on October 17th to 19th.
This year’s grand topic is “lessons from the past, shaping the future”. We aim to tackle the role of new technologies (GIS, GPS, mobiles solutions, remote sensing, drones…) in today’s and tomorrow’s humanitarian interventions; our definite agenda is still under work.
We're welcoming propositions of presentations (please send them before end of August) as well as suggestions of topics you'd like to see covered or technical tools you'd like the see presented: geong[at]cartong.org
To give you an idea, here are some of the topics we plan to discuss this year: who to provide the future assessments of the humanitarian sector?; what integration of analysis tools in MDC solutions?; a feedback on the drones in humanitarian action research; technical local communities, a new partner for humanitarian organizations?; Coordinated Data Scramble: optimizing available data. And a few tools we plan to have demonstration on: advanced OSM exports, coding XLSforms, using API data in DC.js dashboards, and many more!
Furthermore, CartONG is celebrating this year its 10th anniversary, which give us an opportunity to celebrate with our partners and attendees, in particular with a Missing Maps mapathons.
For a more in-depth insight, check our website http://cartong.org/geong/2016
You can already register on http://www.cartong.org/geong/2016/inscriptions
Our projects in 2015
The partnership with Médecins Sans Frontières-Suisse remains one of our most important ones. CartONG continues to implement part of MSF’s GIS Unit activities, which is growing following the increasing needs of the whole MSF movement. We continue to support them globally in their GIS activities and tech watch. Our main tasks is still the creation of maps in regular and rush mode (around 150 since the beginning of the year). The Map Centre is being renewed this year integrating an activation portal to monitor GIS requests. In parallel with the scaling up of the reference databases, we are expanding the scope of the GIS platform by developing and implementing new tools: activities monitoring dashboards, outbreak monitoring webmaps, or MDC projects. Our training offer is also increasing, we organized 3 one-week trainings for GIS basic skills, GIS specialists and GIS focal points.
As part of the global strategy defined with them, from this year onward MSF has built an internal GIS focal points network in charge of the GIS promotion and development, and is also managing directly field deployments of GIS specialists (as well as a growing network of national GIS officers).
After a first mission last summer, we did a follow-up for Solidarités International in Central African Republic. Having already helped set up a complex multi-thematic and partner beneficiaries database, the follow up mission was to help train the local and international staff further and improve the methodologies and tools in place.
With the Public Health section of UNHCR, besides a continued support on their Mobile data collection (MDC) projects (SENS nutrition surveys, WASH Knowledge Attitudes and Practises surveys, trainings, forms improvement), we also started to develop new tools, including the integration of mapping components in survey reporting. We also continued testing phones and routers as well as MDC and SMS based data collection platforms and benchmarked them.
We worked with the Field Information and Coordination Support Section of UNHCR on drafting elements for a GIS strategy, creating webmapping tools and developing UNHCR’s map portal. We are also working on the topic of camp mapping, which includes creation of platform, databases and SOP as well as successfully piloting them in the field, with three pilots so far in Mauritania, Rwanda and Zambia.
We have finalized the Ushahidi platform and a heatmap for Danish Demining Group in Vietnam to inform on mine risks, including SMS reporting. For DDG’s Ukraine project, we supported the development of a web platform for Mine Risk Education, consisting of web page, Ushahidi platform and SMS reporting.
We continued supporting Terre des Hommes-Lausanne’s on their use of MDC, via some remote support, helping them define their HR strategy, building a user community, and creating internal outreach products. We also started an exciting new benchmarking of case management tools for the Protection field.
We conducted a support mission for Action Against Hunger-US in South Sudan. The objective was to implement a platform to monitor water points in the Northern Bahr el Ghazal Region. After testing different tools, we selected the AKVO Flow platform, set it up for ACF and helped them and their governmental partners master it.
We were selected again with partner organizations iMMAP and MapAction to support UNICEF’s Western and Central Africa Office on Information Management and mapping for the next 3 years. We are currently implementing a first field support mission in CAR, training UNICEF and the Central African Red Cross (their implementing partner) on mobile data collection and information management to monitor 60 projects funded by UNICEF in the country.
The research project funded by ECHO consolidate knowledge on the use of drones in the humanitarian context, in partnership with Fondation Suisse de Déminage, the UAViator network and Zoi Environment, has entered in its final year. We continued publishing case studies projects already implemented by various organizations (9 so far), but also participated in the European simulation Trimodex 2 hosted by the French firemen training center Entente Valabre to test the use of drones for Search & Rescue operations, and co-implemented a mission in Tajikistan to test the use of drones to produce imagery and mapping of watershed, where mudslides hit last year. We also organized with FSD a consultation in Geneva on the use of drones for humanitarian mapping, and the GeOnG will include several sessions to get feedback and complete our research so far.
We continued our training cycles at the Bioforce humanitarian school in Lyon, and are planning to extend this partnership in 2017 to include a regional one-week training in West Africa.
We organized a GIS training for Handicap International’s team in Lebanon, our first collaboration with this NGO!
We also continued supporting ICRC in the development of web based applications (dashboards) built on top of their ArcGIS server: Event Monitoring Tool and Health Care in Danger Recommendations monitoring tool.
Focus: NOMAD workshop and new website
We organized a new NOMAD workshop in January 27-28th in Amman, Jordan, with our partner iMMAP and support from Solidarités and UNHCR. With 106 participants from 40 organizations, and 11 providers presenting (inc. 3 remotely) it was a great success. We gathered the dynamic community of MDC experts from the MENA region as well as prominent expert on various topics connected with Information Management. You can find the presentations from the workshop here.
This was also an opportunity for us to relaunch the project with a new website, a major update of the online assistant to compare solutions, and to launch an online Slack community to facilitate communication between MDC practitioners. We are currently supporting the solution providers in updating their data as well as trying to complete our database, please get in touch if you have ideas of solutions or want to help us!
After joining the Coordination Humanitaire & Développement last year, we have been officially accepted in Coordination Sud, the coalition of French NGOs this year. We also organized a new edition of our seminar on Information Management for francophone NGOs, with new participants.
We continue to enhance our tools to better organize our volunteer activities, and have finished a Trello board to list our projects and ideas - it is a great first step if you want to discover our projects and would like to know if you could participate!
We joined the Missing Maps project last year, and have been able to develop more largely our activities this year, with already 15 mapathons organized in various cities and around 400 participants in 6 months! We know plan to further extend our activities with a deeper connection with local communities, field NGO staffs as well as progressing on data validation and developing activities in partnerships with universities, schools and local governments. Missing Maps is one of the 9 shortlisted teams in the “Journey to scale” grant launched by the HIF this year, and we hope it will help us and our partners gather the resources we need for all these new activities!
Several volunteers have started to participate to some long-term tasks in support of MSF (map editions, data research/cleaning, etc.). It has allowed to build interesting collaborations between volunteers and staff and we aim at developing it further - get in touch if you’d like to participate too!
As part of the project MapFugees lead by HOT, one of our volunteers has participated to 2 mapping missions in the refugees camps in Northern France. The first mission in April was in the Grande-Synthe camp built by MSF (cf. Facebook & Twitter). During two weeks, residents of the camps were trained and mapped the overall camp on OpenStreetMap using Field Papers, in combination with basic GPS and JOSM use. Another proof of the power of OSM technology despite its simplicity!
Following this mission and with the support of BSF and OSM France, two maps were printed, displayed and distributed in the camp. They are still there three months after despite the difficult weather! (cf.photo)
CartONG volunteers are currently working on more advanced mapping rendering, and your help will be most useful! The second mission started in July in Calais’ camp and aims at reproducing the same process.
We have presented CartONG during various events (ESRI’s GIS for a sustainable world, FOSS4G-Fr, State Of The Map-France, Marché des continents in Chambéry, Zama Aix with the malgache diaspora) and to raise awareness on humanitarian mapping in several universities (Carthagéo, Réseau Projection, Basque Country Univ., Cergy, Heidelberg)
Focus: webmapping for the National Committee against AIDS in Madagascar
UNAIDS in Madagascar wanted to assist the Executive Secretariat of the National Committee for the Fight against AIDS (Comité National de Lutte contre le SIDA, CNLS) in creating an interactive cartographic tool that showed the interventions made by the civil society to tackle this issue in the island since 2013, answering the question: "Who does what, where, when and with whom?" This tool aims also identify the gaps in order to improve the strategies for the fight against AIDS implemented in the future by the CNLS.
After a first stage of the project conducted by UN volunteers, a team from CartONG has taken it over and created a webmapping application, which articulates various open source solutions adapted to the needs of the CNLS.
After a little bit more than a year of hard work from our volunteers, in June of this year we have finally launched our first prototype visible here: http://cnls.cartong.org/
Next steps will be: presenting the application to the CNLS and UNAIDS in Madagascar, give support to future users in order to get started with the cartographic tool and fix the bugs that will present in the next six months.
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