Preventing child hunger with an app

After discovering that 13.1 million children lived in food-insecure households in 2015, five teenage girls from New York City knew they had to do something to solve this problem. Alyssa Kapasi (age 16), Gabrielle Rich (age 18), Fiona Xu (age 16), Ivy Mao (age 15), and Emma Yan (age 13) set about to make sure every child eats lunch. This team shows how to #UseTech4Good.

The Problem

Even with subsidized lunches, they found that students still go hungry. In the video, they state, “Hidden beneath this facade of money, glamour, and privilege is a problem that we often overlook, hunger… 1 in 4 New York City children are at risk of hunger.” They also shared that if a student cannot afford lunch they can be ridiculed for not having money for lunch and even forced to go hungry.

The Goal

Their goal is to raise awareness and find a solution for the issue of poverty-related hunger. They also seek a solution for the stigma children can face when they cannot afford lunch.

This team, that calls themselves “Team Fig,” created a prototype app to be a model for the service. The app allows other parents/adults to donate money toward a child’s lunch in an anonymous “Pay it Forward” method. Their hope is that the kindness and strength of the community will relieve some stress and pain from those in need.

Read more about their story here:

Food for Thought was a project they created for the 2017 Peace First Challenge.

Read more stories of youth using technology to serve, inspire, uplift, and make a positive difference in the world. 

Here at we believe youth can be deliberate users of technology. They can solve large world problems as well as create a better community at home using technology. Every person has a sphere of influence and we like to highlight examples of youth using technology deliberately and positively to improve the world (in big or small ways – it’s all important).

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