CASE STUDY: GBV Mobile App Development in Mauritius
Client: Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) – Republic of Mauritius
Stakeholders: United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Police Main Command & Control Centre (MCCC), Police Family Protection Unit (PFPU), Ministry of Gender Equality & Family Welfare (MGEFW), Central Informatics Bureau (CIB), National Computer Board (GOC).
Timeframe to Go-Live = 2 months 1 week – 25 November 2020
Timeframe to deliver Mobile App = 1 month
Gender Based Violence affects 25% of women at least once in their life, whether from a partner or non partner. 14% of women suffer without coming out. Domestic violence is estimated to cost around 0.5% of GDP, while 22% of women who absent themselves from work are due to violence.
Prime Minister of the Republic of Mauritius, The Hon Pravind Kumar JUGNAUTH, lead a High Level Committee for the Strategic Plan to Eliminate Gender Based Violence in the Republic of Mauritius. This committee consisted of all Ministers, Permanent Secretaries, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Police Main Command & Control Centre (MCCC), Police Family Protection Unit (PFPU) and Ministry of Gender Equality & Family Welfare (MGEFW).
One of the initiatives is the implementation of a mobile app with a panic button. This would allow victims (new and existing holders of protection orders) to quickly and discretely report to Police when they are encountering gender based violence – whether at home or work. Police would take immediate action to intervene based on the GPS location of the alert. This was the scope of this GBV mobile app development in Mauritius.
During the selection process itself, 100% of the developers of nVisionIT were commissioned to developed a working demo of the mobile app and back end web app in just 24 hours.
Upon award, there were only 2 months for the project to go live – including the mobile app being published on at least on Play Store. Budget was also a constraint.
There are 6 stakeholders, each with their own understanding of requirements and constraints. The major users of the system would be MCCC, PFPU and MGEFW, with MCCC taking the first action when the panic button is pressed.
Integration with an existing case management used by Ministry of Gender Equality & Family Welfare (MGEFW) was yet another challenge due to the non-responsive supplier of that system.
As far as distribution, Apple App Store was an unexpected setback given they failed to approve the creation of an account to publish the app even after 2 months and several follow up communication.
What we did
Four teams were setup: one working on the mobile app, another on the web app, third on the cloud infrastructure and last one for the animation. World-class engineering process enables nVisionIT teams to work in sync efficiently. The apps were initially deployed on Microsoft Azure Platform as a Service – which is nVisionIT’s preferred platform. This allowed to fast and distributed development. The backend and frontend were subsequently deployed on Government Cloud.
Keeping scope in check was key to ensuring timely delivery and budget. Key features were priorities in committee meetings. Optional features were proposed to be taken up after the go-live of 25/11/2020.
The technology used is ASP.NET / MariaDB while the proven nVisionIT web backend and front end was used. This had already been proven national level in another project: MAUPASS National Authentication Framework that has 100,000+ users.
The Mobile App was completed 1 whole month in advance – the objective being to give sufficient time to Google, Apple and Huawei to review the apps on their respective marketplaces. The app was published on time on Play Store and AppGallery before the launching.
For the Integration with MGEFW’s Case Management, nVisionIT: avoiding the dependency on third party an intelligent method to push information into a location where they could then connect to extract once they were ready.
Training was given to all relevant stakeholders. Further feedback was also gathered after publishing the app.
Within the first week of launching there were nearly 50 cases of GBV reported through the application from the nearly 500 downloads. The project saved the lives of women and will save many more in the future.
PMO and UNDP were both satisfied with the work delivered, paving the road for the next phase of the projects.
nVisionIT is committed to delivering Software Engineering Excellence, for the betterment of national projects in the Republic of Mauritius.