B-Change kickstarts fundraising drive for app to enhance access to LGBTI inclusive services

CBS News journalist Reena Ninan interviewing B-Change founder Laurindo Garcia at MCON 2016.

CBS News journalist Reena Ninan interviewing B-Change founder Laurindo Garcia at MCON 2016.

After five years of analyzing data and experience in the field, B-Change now has the confidence to put all its efforts into creating its first mobile app.

B-Change founder Laurindo Garcia revealed the social enterprise's mobile app strategy in a presentation at MCON 2016 held at National Geographic Society headquarters in Washington D.C. 

"We want to build on the data that we have gathered across Southeast Asia and attempt to take our work global," Garcia said after his presentation. "Our product will be a platform to help drive our advocacy for greater inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex people."

Despite being in an age of social connectivity, it is still difficult for  lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex people (LGBTI) to find accurate information on places where people can seek help.

A hand-held mobile database of services and places that are friendly or inclusive of the LGBTI community can provide relief; in some cases it could even help to save lives.

B-Change's app will have directories and maps to help users find reputable local service providers. Users can also rate and review the services based on their level of inclusiveness. 

By creating this app the social enterprise we will have a platform for businesses, grassroots organisations and government agencies to declare their commitment to inclusion of LGBTI. App users will have the power to monitor how these declaration have turned into action over time. 

Garcia explained that the app initiative forms the cornerstone of B-Change's sustainability plans. "If successful, we will be less reliant on grants,' Garcia said, "and we'll be more self-sufficient as a viable social enterprise."

Results from this fundraising campaign will help guide B-Change's expansion plans. "Every donation tells us that there is demand for our app platform in any given city or town. No donation is too small," explains Garcia. "This is a clear signal that people are willing to invest in their community and we want to be able to cultivate these commitments through our work"

Read more on the fundraising drive

B-Change's participation at MCON was made possible thanks to the generous support of Levi Strauss Foundation. 

 

Post revised June 23, 2016 at 1:00pm