Impact and Reconstruction

October 23, 2009

I had the privilege of spending a day at the Impact Direct Ministries in Athone, Cape Town on Monday of this week.

I spoke with the Director of IDM, Roger Peterson about the work they are doing with local people in need and in particular the success they have had helping to get people off drugs.  One of the keys to getting people off drugs has been to give them something new to focus on i.e. RLabs.  RLabs was set up by Marlon Parker, who I first met in February 2009 at the launch of Living Labs in Southern Africa, LLiSA.

Marlon has pioneered the use of mobile and web technology for social change in Athlone, Cape Town, South Africa.  The “Reconstructed Labs” or “RLabs” are truely a great example of a “living lab”.  The technology is applied to real life issues related to drugs, AIDS and general traininng of the local community in social media and mobile technology.  See details of these projects on the RLabs website here.  Marlon gave me an overview of the project:

I also spoke with a few of the team who have been helped off drugs and are now key members of the RLabs team.

Mobile technology can be used for social change and this particular project is inspiring!  I am hoping to work with RLabs Team going forward so that the Betavine Social Exchange project can benefit from all they have learnt in this space.


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