Talk To Loop is a global platform (available in Zambia, Somalia, Indonesia and the Philippines) that enables people to share information and experiences about the humanitarian and development assistance they have received. In other words, it is an independent, unique tool for people using humanitarian aid to provide feedback on the services they receive.
The Loop platform enables the organisations that use it to reach even more recipients, at the same time giving them the opportunity to react directly. This, in turn, makes their actions even more effective, and at the same time contributes to building social trust.
Using the Loop platform is possible via various channels: the online www platform, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, SMS, Telegram and recently also in IVRR technology.
Loop contributes to a world in which people using humanitarian aid are not seen only as passive beneficiaries, but become active participants in this process thanks to the fact that their statements and opinions become clearly audible. Thus, each published opinion contributes to paving new paths and finding better solutions.
The invasion of Ukraine by the Russian Federation began on February 24, 2022, as an escalation of the war that has been going on since 2014. At this point, the lives of many Ukrainians changed forever. In fear of the war, they began to evacuate from the towns affected by the conflict to other countries, including neighbouring Poland. The Poles' response was quick and exact, aid camps were established on the border, organisations began to provide help in various ways, and many people invited refugees into their homes, giving them a safe place to live.
Many Ukrainians and Poles have not had any contact with non-governmental organisations so far, and therefore many of these people were distrustful of various aid activities. Hence, the idea to launch the Loop platform in Poland and Ukraine.
Elite Crew has been cooperating with Loop for a long time, our team of specialists is responsible for building the platform from scratch and developing it. Our CEO Marek Wrzosowski made a proposal to the founder of the Loop organisation - Alex Ross to launch Talk To Loop in Poland and Ukraine. The task was not easy, the time was short, and it was necessary to create a team that would help promote the platform here.
It took less than 3 weeks to create the Poland-Ukraine team, launch the platform and start the promotion. The platform is multilingual, so we are also talking about translating the platform into two new languages (Polish and Ukrainian) - which was quite a challenge.
The team responsible for promoting the platform in Poland and Ukraine is Natalia Kotyla - Team Lead, Natalia Boyko - Moderator, Marek Wrzosowski - Tech Lead, and me as a Communications Lead.
Initially, Loop was specifically aimed at supporting people forced to evacuate from war-torn Ukraine. Today, Loop takes an integrating role, bringing together on the platform all charities, humanitarian aid organisations, orphanages, social welfare and other aid and socially engaged organisations operating in Poland and Ukraine.
In the beginning, we considered Facebook as the appropriate channel to promote the platform in Poland and Ukraine. Facebook has the most users in Poland because as many as 17.65 million people use it as of February 2022. In Ukraine, Facebook is used by 22 million people (data from August 2022), and it is also the most popular platform.
The first months were very intense in terms of meetings (both online and live) with organisations. Natalia Kotyla and Natalia Boyko were tasked with contacting organisations and informing them about the new tool for feedback, and inviting them to cooperate. In addition to preparing presentations and online documents promoting the platform, we also prepared materials for printing, such as leaflets, posters, roll-ups, etc., which we could leave at refugee assistance points located throughout the Podkarpackie Province. This is where we focused our activities because it was the main destination for Ukrainians. In social media, in addition to showing our field activities, we focused on explaining to users how the platform works so that they would be more likely to use it. Our marketing team was preparing video instructions in two languages explaining how to use each channel, we started adding video vlogs about our activities etc.
In April, representatives of the Poland-Ukraine team met in Rzeszów with the central Loop branch, represented by Simon Middleton - Business and Communications Lead. The main purpose of our meeting was to assess the situation and the size of the problem, promote the platform, and find appropriate help and actions in which Loop may be involved. We visited border crossings in Medyka and Przemyśl and participated in NGO meetings in Przemyśl and Rzeszów.
Over time, the situation with the conflict began to "stabilize" if I may say that. The "crowds" of refugees stopped coming to Poland, but rather individuals. Points at the borders have closed, and aid has moved to larger cities and changed direction. Now the focus was on helping with documents, assisting in obtaining visas, arranging permanent accommodation, placing children in schools, etc. So our activities have changed direction as well. We started promoting local events and training for Ukrainians and, accordingly, for Poles (not in the context of the war).
Check out our social media to see our activities:
As of August 2022, over 40 open feedbacks and 7 sensitive fedbacks have been submitted to the platform. 12 organisations in Poland and Ukraine joined the platform.
Examples of sensitive feedback:
Organisations that joined (information from August 2022):
We act all the time and learn from our mistakes. We understand more and more how humanitarian organisations work, and it is not as obvious as it seems. We are learning that culture change takes time and it is important to build confidence and awareness with all key stakeholders to achieve success: affected populations, responding organisations and influencing donors.
So far, there have been no actively operating global organisations in Poland and Ukraine. We teach others what to expect from such an organisation through Talk To Loop. In my opinion, this is an innovative approach and a tool for building trust among people receiving aid.
With the work and effort put into establishing the brand, we have built a strong reputation. Our social media activities aim to build trust in the brand, which can be seen in the increasing number of feedback we receive.
I see great potential in the Talk To Loop platform and I hope that more and more both ordinary people and aid organisations will see the potential in it and start using it.
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