Innovation That Matters

Charity chatbot raises awareness via virtual journey

Sport & Fitness

Walk With Yeshi, a collaboration between Lokai and charity: water, takes Messenger users on the arduous journey Ethiopian women endure every day to find clean water.

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Virtual reality is creating new experiences for almost every area of life, from crime scene re-enactments to shared game-time experiences for distant friends. Bringing people together is particularly useful for charities in closing the compassion gap when the beneficiaries of their projects are often abroad. The recent collaboration by jewelry company Lokai and charity: water uses Facebook Messenger’s chatbot to take users around the world on the grueling journey endured by Ethiopian women every day.

The Walk With Yeshi experience helps people understand the daily realities of communities living without easy access to clean water. Yeshi walks for two and a half hours and carries a large container on her back for the water. The chatbot interacts with users, asking them questions about their lives and comparing their answers to Yeshi’s. The conversation includes details about Yeshi’s life that, while fictional, are representative of millions of young girls and women.

Yeshi shares her desire to attend school and the work she’d like to do – neither of which is possible when her days are taken up by the search for safe water. How else could chatbots help to humanize remote or complex ideas and situations?



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