My Take-aways from Glific’s first City Meet-up


JUNE 13, 2023


This blog is written by Anuradha Ganesan from OBLF (One Billion Literates Foundation)

As I begin to think about my experience of representing our work at One Billion Literates Foundation at Glific’s first ever city cohort meet in Bangalore, I am reminded of a quote that’s attributed to Newton – ‘If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulder of giants.” In this case, the giants were representatives from Key Education Foundation, Reap Benefit, Nayi Disha, Avni, Quest Alliance, Udhyam Learning Foundation and Arogya World. They were each, like us, working on setting up a WhatsApp-based chatbot for their end users in collaboration with Glific.

Sharing some of my key take-aways from meeting organizations that are years into:

1. The bot is as good as we make it out to be – Possibilities are endless with WhatsApp supporting the integration with multiple platforms. We looked at how some organizations have worked around using ChatGPT and Speech-to-text conversion catering to the demographic that they work with.

2. The obvious answer isn’t always the right answer – It was eye-opening to learn from organizations on how they have gone above and beyond in making the user experience a seamless one. It involves having a vision for what the product should look like at scale and experimenting with it as we pilot, sometimes over and over again.

3. Nothing beats the power of the collective in efforts towards social change – I have always admired how folks in the social development space don’t guard their trade secrets and want to share their experiences, efforts, successes and failures ever so openly. This space reinforced the power of the collective for me. I now have a network to reach out to and learn from their lived experiences in setting up their chatbot.   

It was incredible to be in the same space with people who are sailing the same storm, which in this case is setting up a chat-bot across education, youth empowerment, healthcare, NGO capacity building and student leadership. I am looking forward to being a part of Glific’s upcoming sprint and also hearing from the participants of the upcoming city meet-ups in Mumbai and Delhi.  

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