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Aims to organize the community to supply study cards to girls & women in protracted crises; handing the cards by the nearest agent of change

Photo of Lucia Avila
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What problem does your innovation solve?

1. Girls and women's access-barriers to education. 2. Loss of access to education -teachers, facilities, and material- due to temporal displacement or erosion of livelihoods. 3. Short commitment patterns to volunteering. 4. Disconnected individual efforts to help.

Explain your innovation.

Study cards are one of the most common educational tools. They are affordable, easy to replace and a way to review key content. Moreover, they are not subject to schools, electricity, or teachers to be activated. They represent an excellent medium to deploy a -continuous- educational experience during emergency situations. One important feature to consider when filling emergency's educational gap is to develop enhanced knowledge that addresses the emotional needs and the time barriers to educational activities. In this regard, 1Card1Child will develop its content guided by Design for Play and System Thinking methods. Under the supervision of Dr. Kopainsky ( at University of Bergen, along the past two years and a half, 1Card1Child has built an understanding of change through educational applications of system thinking, specifically, using System Dynamics to tackle food security in protracted crises ( With these two guiding lines: System Dynamics and Design for Play, and the firm belief that a tighter social fabric enables sustainable development, we have designed a framework to supply education to girls and young women in protracted crises: DEVELOP: We create relevant content to the situation by first generating a thorough understanding of it. ENGAGE: We transform the desire to help, into action by linking volunteers capacities. SUPPLY: We equip the nearest agent of change with trustworthy educational resources.

Who benefits?

Girls and women are usually disproportionately affected in crisis-situations. Considering that their experience is the result of collective action, we need to address the situation systemically. We intend to serve two populations, the nearest communities to the crises and the girls and women on it. The nearest communities will benefit from gaining civil abilities to face society's problems. And the girls and young women will take advantage of an organized effort to provide access to knowledge. For example in the case study presented in this proposal: youth that migrates through Mexico by foot from Central America to the USA. Two indicators will measure the success of the progress: 1. Growth on geographical volunteer density (volunteers per sq. km.) 2. Perceived agency of migrating girls and young women to confront their experience.

How is your innovation unique?

WHAT ARE YOU DOING THAT IS DIFFERENT FROM SIMILAR INITIATIVES? We bring together the mobility of knowledge and ease of delivery, characteristic particular to study cards, with the platform that links diverse, otherwise disconnected, volunteering efforts, into impactful actions. WHAT UNIQUE ADVANTAGES DO YOU HAVE TO IMPLEMENT THIS INNOVATION? Ability to approach and understand protracted-crises situations with System Dynamics expertise to laser-focus efforts on causes. WHAT ARE OTHER ORGANIZATIONS ADDRESSING THE CHALLENGE USING A SIMILAR APPROACH? Other initiatives have made efforts to deliver material about Emotional Intelligence ( and System Thinking through a similar approach ( ( WHAT IS DIFFERENT ABOUT YOUR IDEA AND WHY DO YOU BELIEVE YOURS WILL BE MORE SUCCESSFUL? Human-centered knowledge created by the beneficiaries instead of a top-down content which validates relevancy of the study cards contents.

What are some of your unanswered questions about the idea?

1. How to address the "Value Proposition" of the Agents of Change beyond the volunteering spirit? 2. How to decrease repetition of cards to the same recipient? 3. How to better track and assess educational outcomes in a protracted-crisis community? 4. How can we leverage our efforts to generate and activate local policies? 5. In what other ways can we increase civil awareness and engagement in the communities around or near protracted-crisis contexts?

Tell us more about you.

We are a team based in Mexico and Norway, currently working independently, with experience of more than ten years of Design Research, Strategic, Service, and Product Design. Our joint portfolio showcases a keen interest in children and social development projects with collaborations for Mexican and International companies.

What is the primary type of emergency setting where your innovation would operate?

  • Prolonged displacement
  • Extreme drought

Emergency Setting - Elaborate

Migration routes. We aim to implement our Idea in regions that are experiencing protracted crises.

Where will your innovation be implemented?

We will start with the crisis which is geographically closest to us, the migration routes through Mexico of people from Central America to the United States (as pilot study) and, given the opportunity, the crisis in which we already have gather scientific knowledge, the Horn of Africa.

Experience in Implementation Country(ies)

  • Yes, for more than one year.

In-country Networks

1Card1Child will rely, for consulting the syllabus of the study cards, on the System Dynamics Society Special Interest group in Education ( ); for reviewing the Maps of the System on the System Dynamics community at University of Bergen and for the implementation and construction of the online platform with software developers and illustrators in Mexico and Norway.

Sector Expertise

  • I've worked in a sector related to my innovation for more than a year.

Sector Expertise - Elaborate

We have a background in different disciplines of Design. Lucia has worked as a volunteer for the Mexican Red Cross and professionally with international social agencies for projects in Kenya and Ethiopia; most recently for the International Displacement Monitoring Center ( Meche has a 10 year experience in Strategic Design and Emiliano has worked over +7 years as Design Researcher. 1Card1Child is intended to be implemented by an independent team and deployed by volunteers.

Innovation Maturity

  • Early Stage Innovation: I am exploring my innovation, refining, researching, and gathering inspiration.

Organization Status

  • We are not registered but plan to in the future.

Organization Location

We are based in Mexico City and Norway.


We developed the following prototype to test the core message:

How has your Idea changed based on feedback?

We collected feedback through online surveys. Parallel to this, we visited the context of the closest emergency situation in Mexico where we performed contextual interviews with potential beneficiaries. The insights gathered help us reshape our idea in two areas: A. The Organizational Model to define the cards' content, based on the Mapping of the System. B. The Business Model for being able to provide a more durable cards' material.

Who will implement this Idea?

The idea will be implemented by a core team of four people: a System Dynamicist, a Research Designer, a Graphic Designer (Print) and Business Designer (Partnerships and Supply Logistics). Working virtually and full-time, located in Mexico and Norway. Additionally, there will be consultations on Education Topics with the System Dynamics Society Special Interest Group in Education and for the development of the website and printed cards with coders and Illustrators in Mexico.

What challenges do your end-users face? (1) What is the biggest challenge that your end-users face on a day-to-day, individual level? (2) What is the biggest systems-level challenge that affects your end-users?

· Poverty and gang-conflicts force people to migrate out of Central America. There, they lack access to education, even when some education programs are free, they require materials that people cannot afford. · Consumption as the promise of happiness orients migration towards the United States. This becomes the only desirable and imaginable future. · Displaced people suffer emotional stress caused by the extreme circumstances. Police brutality and narco-violence, too, are agents of making the migration journey more dangerous. · Indifference and stigmatization from people near to the crisis contexts leave them alone and more exposed. · The main problem of protracted crises is the erosion of livelihoods that generates the loss of assets, increasing the burden of humanitarian and

How is your organization considering sustainable growth in order to continue making an impact over time?

We are a small organization, driven to implement the scientific knowledge we've gathered on building resilient societies through education. The goal of 1C1C is to amplify access to education by decentralizing educational activities through enhanced, educational resources -the cards- and thus providing efficient access to them. To do so, we will work to implement a growth model funded by two long tail activities: the inflow of large, small donations (1card=1 USD) and the maximization of the coverage by using the actual capacity on the field.

Tell us about your vision for this project: (1) share one sentence about the impact that you would like to see from this project in five years and (2) what is the biggest question/hurdle you need to address to get there?

IMPACT: By 2021, we aim to increase the level of awareness and empathy of society towards people under emergency situations measured by the volunteering density understood as the ratio of neighbors actively involved, as catalysts, agents or explorers, in providing help to communities of displaced people near their area. QUESTIONS: How to measure the empathy shift on society? How to scale the project taking into account the cultural relevance? How do we design a safe, continuous assessment

How do you currently measure (or plan to measure) outcomes for this project?

OUTCOME A: Awareness of the situation and relevance of education amongst the nearest communities to the crises. OUTPUT : Girls and women access to educational material (cards) and number of agents of change. PROGRESS IN LEARNING: Geographically. Since migration path from Central America to the US through Mexico exposes migrants to violence, the advance with which knowledge is distributed is of highest priority, the sooner the better. This can be translated into “the further south, the better”.

What is the timeline for your project Idea? What are the key steps for implementation in the next 1-3 years?

STAGE A.1 (09/17-02/18): Develop pilot study for Central America Migration Routes Output: Crisis' Research & Map, Set of Cards and Partnerships Roles: System Dynamicist, Design Researcher, Illustrator, Business Designer STAGE A.2 (11/17-03/18): Develop and test online platform Output: Online platform Roles: Interaction Designer, Coder STAGE B (04/18-09/18): Open Central American Migration Routes card delivery to NGOs STAGE C (10/18-12/18): Open card delivery to General Population

My organization's operational budget for 2016 was:

  • We didn't have an operating budget

How many of your team’s paid, full-time staff are currently based in the location where the beneficiaries of your proposed Idea live?

  • No paid, full-time staff

Is your organization registered in the country that you intend to implement your Idea in?

  • We are not a registered entity.

How long have you and your colleagues been working on this Idea together?

  • Between 1 and 2 years

What do you need the most support with for your innovation?

  • Business Development / Partnerships Support
  • Business Model Support
  • Other Technical Expertise


Join the conversation:

Photo of Dave Hughes

Hi Lucia, this is a great idea! My name is David Hughes and I am the Project Director for the Bendigo Inventor Awards.

Now in our 7th year, the Bendigo Inventor awards have as our focus inventions that address needs in the Emergency Services and Disaster Management space, and we offer a AUD$10,000 prize for the winning entry. The Bendigo Inventor Awards has also created an environment for inventors to obtain support for their ideas by bringing together a coalition of partners with the knowledge, skills and networks to accelerate the progression of ideas from concept through to commercialisation. Major Program Partners include Engineers Australia who are providing technical feedback, KPMG who are offering advice on commercial viability and the path to commercialisation and Red Cross, who are providing their perspective on the relevance of many inventions to disaster relief efforts. Our judging panel also contains representatives from Emergency Management Victoria, who are able to provide similar feedback on the applicability of inventions to the emergency services.

I believe your idea would be a fantastic entry into the awards. Applying is easy and can be done through our website Simply select the category that your invention applies to – ‘Concept’ or ‘Product and Prototype’, and answer some questions about your invention. All judges are required to sign a non-disclosure agreement, so your idea is protected. Entries close 5pm Friday 29th September 2017 AEST.

I very much look forward to seeing your invention go on to great success, and hope we are able to assist you in enabling that to happen. If you have any questions at all, please do not hesitate to get in touch on the phone number above, or via my email at

David Hughes
Project Director
Bendigo Inventor Awards

Photo of Christel

This program is so unique, how will you track measures of effectiveness?

Photo of Lucia Avila

Hi Christel! Thank you very much for your question.

Our main goal is to inspire and equip agents of change with educational material relevant to each emergency situation. Following this purpose, we plan to track, awareness and adoption of the agents of change, mainly quantifying their interaction with the platform and in a subsequent stage, define a direct partnerships with NGO’s.

After receiving feedback from stakeholders and beneficiaries, stressing the need to prioritize knowledge as: camp maps, human rights, personal health, accountability and the role of authorities, among other topics; we re-evaluated the content of the cards: the knowledge on them, the information they should carry and theirs participation on the system. We defined three objectives to define the content:

1. Elevate women’s voice at the center of the conversation: “Girls and women teaching the system”.
2. Map the priority points that have the ability to transform the complex situation : “Understand the root and the symptoms”.
3. Translate the priority points into cards emphasizing self-reflection assessments (system thinking): “Knowledge vs. Understanding”. This last point, is our proposal to measure progress in learning along temporal displacements, where the education systems act in parallel until a formal system gets again in place.

Photo of OpenIDEO

Hi Lucia, thanks for the post! Any chance you could find an image to go along with it? Images help grab attention and tell a story. You should be able to use the Edit Contribution button on the top of your post and follow the instructions to add images from there. Looking forward to seeing more of your inspiring insights on OpenIDEO.