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News — 29 May, 2020

HOT Rapid Response Microgrants: COVID-19 – First round of Micrograntees announced

We’re excited to announce the first round of awardees for HOT Rapid Response Microgrants: COVID-19. Microgrants, which are provided to OpenStreetMap communities to support their local response to the pandemic, have been awarded to projects in Liberia, Uganda, Kenya and Mongolia. Over the next 6 months, these Microgrants will support the following work:

iLab Liberia

iLab Liberia will use OSM to map active healthcare facilities across Liberia including testing and quarantine centers, COVID-19 hotspots and road networks, including collecting data on the services available at each facility. iLab will work with government, private sector, civil society and local community residents to use the data collected to better locate and identify services. iLab Liberia are partnering with the Ministry of Health, and other civil society organizations and networks to implement their project.


MapUganda (OpenStreetMap Uganda) are collaborating with Geo YouthMappers and the Uganda Red Cross Society (URCS) to remotely map all 40 border entry towns across Uganda. The community will create detailed maps to support and retool the URCS and Ministry of Health surveillance efforts against the spread of COVID-19. By creating projects on the HOT Tasking Manager, conducting mapping webinars, and engaging local community and members of the MOH and URCS, MapUganda will create detailed datasets to identify porous borders where COVID-19 may be being imported into border communities.

Trucks at Malaba.jpg

Trucks at Malaba, Uganda-Kenya border

Map Kibera

Several government agencies and NGOs have implemented measures to slow the spread of COVID-19 in Kibera, the largest slum in Kenya. However, Map Kibera, a local mapping NGO, has recognized that the efforts have not yet been well documented. In response, Map Kibera has launched the Kenya COVID-19 Tracker Ushahidi Instance to document geospatial data and track cases across Kenya. With their microgrant, Map Kibera will improve OSM basemaps in Kibera to allow visualization of current status and hotspots. This will be done in collaboration with OSM Kenya. The community will also be partnering with several other organizations that are already distributing food, sanitation points, face masks and sharing information about the virus within Kibera.

Kenya Covid -19 Tracker main page.PNG

Kenya COVID-19 tracker

Public Lab Mongolia

High population density in Ulaanbaatar, access to public health services, and the distance between remote rural communities and healthcare facilities are challenges that will leave communities in Mongolia vulnerable during the global COVID-19 pandemic. In partnership with the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Public Lab Mongolia plan to map health service infrastructure and essential services in all 21 provinces of Mongolia to promote disaster preparedness amid the COVID-19 outbreak. The microgrant will enable Public Lab Mongolia to develop a complete OSM dataset on health service infrastructure including health services, pharmacies, banks, grocery stores, and petrol stations.

Congratulations to the communities that have been selected. The communities and their projects are listed below and we’ll be posting regular updates on their progress on the HOT blog and social media channels.

We are looking forward to seeing how the projects develop and the impact that they have. You can find more information about the HOT Rapid Response Microgrants: COVID-19 Program and more information about HOT’s community grants on the HOT website.

Applications for the Rapid Response Microgrants: COVID-19 remain open – selection is rolling and the next round of grantees will be decided on Wednesday 10 June. More information on how to apply can be found on the Rapid Response Microgrants COVID-19 blog post.

Update: We have announced a second round of Rapid Response Micrograntee recipients.