The group aims to raise $25,000 by April to travel and meet NASA and present the solution and get support to roll out the project in the Philippines and the region.
Photo courtesy of the group's GoFundMe page
Filipino researchers seek funding for anti-dengue project with NASA
(Philstar.com) - February 25, 2020 - 8:00am

MANILA, Philippines — A group of Filipino researchers is knocking at the hearts of social media users for seed funding for a project to lessen the impact of a mosquito-borne disease in the Philippines and abroad.

Dengue fever is spread through the Aedes Egypti mosquito, which is said to have claimed five lives a day in 2019.

The researchers, who recently bagged the NASA Space Apps Challenge with their "AEDES PROJECT," have created an app that gives real-time dengue alerts by pinpointing "dengue hotspots by detecting stagnant water using satellite data."

The group aims to raise money to travel and meet NASA to present their proposed solution and get support to roll out the project in the Philippines and the region.

"We think with a seed fund of $25,000 we can start to make an impact," the group said in their GoFundMe page.

The team includes researchers Dominic Vincent Ligot, Frances Claire Tayco, Lennard Garcia, Mark Toledo, Nick Tobia and organizer Cricket Soong. 

The funding they are gathering is meant to cover the following expenses:

  • Researchers and volunteers ($9,000)
  • Tools and subscriptions ($4,000)
  • Travel to NASA ($12,000)

"[A]lthough we were recognized as a global winner, what we hope [for] is a chance to also meet the NASA organizers in person, show them our plans and work so far and get serious support to put this solution in place," they added.

"Even a $1 donation moves our mission further to stop and prevent this deadly disease."

In the long run, the researches aim to reduce not only dengue cases but other mosquito-borne diseases like malaria, Zika and Chikungunya.

A local edition of the NASA Space Apps has been held since 2016.

Two years ago, a group of Pinoy developers called iNON (for "it’s Now or Never!") used a citizen science platform by NASA to develop an application seeking to communicate scientific data to fishermen even without an internet connection.

In 2019, another Filipino team won the NASA Space Apps Challenge with "solution that best makes space data accessible, or leverages it to a unique application." — Philstar.com intern Gabrielle Ann Gabriel

AEDES PROJECT DENGUE FUNDRAISER NASA SPACE APPS CHALLENGE SATELLITE DATA
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