Our members are currently assisting a CDC mapping scientist in the Ebola outbreak response efforts by using an online mapping platform called OpenStreetMap to gather infrastructural spacial data in affected regions — particularly Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Liberia. Because these data (i.e. location of villages, connecting roads, and relative population size) do not exist or are not easily accessible in these regions, OpenStreetMap allows volunteers to provide such information to organizations like MSF (Doctors Without Borders) on the ground that are currently spearheading the response. Since OpenStreetMap is an open-source online platform, our members are able to conveniently map whenever they’re available and have internet connection.
Check out this short video to learn more about how valuable these and similar humanitarian mapping efforts are: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C175zW8-6j8