FrontlineSMS Photo Competition winners!

People say a picture speaks a thousand words, and this was the motivation behind our FrontlineSMS user photo competition, which opened towards the end of April. We are always keen to see the many innovative ways FrontlineSMS users have been using our software around the world. Photography is an excellent medium to show how FrontlineSMS is being used to in a variety of exciting and innovative ways, and it was great to receive photos and see projects in action!

We are pleased to announce that the winner of the FrontlineSMS Photo Competition is Molave Development Foundation, Inc. Based in the Philippines, Molave Development Foundation runs the valuable Safe Motherhood project, which was recently featured in our National Geographic blog series Mobile Message.  The project aims to reduce mother and infant mortality rates by  providing education and support to expectant mothers via SMS. Molave sent us lots of great photos of their work including midwives training on FrontlineSMS and expectant mothers receiving messages from FrontlineSMS. To see these photos visit our FrontlineSMS Facebook page here.

Many thanks to everyone who sent in there photos. Although the competition is now over we are still always looking for high resolution images of FrontlineSMS in action so please send along any photos you would like to share with us to

Meanwhile, as worthy winners of our recent photo competition we will be sending Molave Development Foundation some of our brand new FrontlineSMS T-shirts as competition prizes!

A picture speaks a thousand words: FrontlineSMS photo competition!

caption id="attachment_6572" align="alignright" width="300" caption="FrontlineSMS being used in Malawi health project. Photo credit: Josh Nesbit, Medic Mobile"]The 'Mobiles in Malawi' project By Nsonje Siame, Community Project Assistant

Here at FrontlineSMS we love seeing our software being put to good use in social change projects across the world, so we have decided to run a FrontlineSMS user photo competition! The photos will help us to more effectively represent FrontlineSMS users’ valuable work to wide audiences. Through your photos we also hope to learn more about the many wonderful ways in which you, our users, utilise FrontlineSMS software.  Five of the best submissions will be selected to be the lucky winners will receive a FrontlineSMS T-shirt too!

FrontlineSMS is used in over 70 countries for projects as varied as election monitoring in Nigeria, helping provide timely diagnosis for malaria cases in Cambodia, and distributing market prices in Indonesia. Now we want to see how you use it.

The types of photos we would love to receive from you are:

  • Any photos which show someone in front of a computer or laptop, preferably with FrontlineSMS visible on-screen and the phone or modem connected
  • People reading and sending text messages
  • Group training sessions based on using FrontlineSMS
  • A demonstration of the context in which FrontlineSMS is used, for example photos of use of FrontlineSMS at a community radio station, or at a healthcare clinic or in a classroom
  • Individuals or groups of people raising their arms in the air, doing the FrontlineSMS logo o/
  • Anything which actually shows FrontlineSMS in the shot is a real bonus!

The best photos we receive will be featured here on our website and on the FrontlineSMS Facebook page. They will also potentially be used in high profile places to represent FrontlineSMS use, such as in printed articles, chapters in relevant books and in our National Geographic blog series, Mobile Message. Full credit will of course be given for any photographs used, thus providing winner’s projects with some valuable exposure.

Furthermore, as mentioned, we will be selecting five lucky contestants to win FrontlineSMS T-shirts too!

How to enter:

If you would like to enter this competition please send photos to as soon as possible, but by Tuesday 31st May at the latest. Please ensure you include details of how you would like the photos credited, and what you would like the captions to be. Captions should preferably include details of where and when photo was taken, and a description of what the photo shows.

We ask that all photos be high resolution wherever possible (this means sending us the camera original photograph files, uncompressed). If you are unsure if your photos fit this criteria please do send them along anyway!

We will announce the winners of the competition at the beginning of June 2011.

Terms and conditions:

  1. You must only submit photographs which you own rights to or have full permission to use.
  2. You have responsibility to send along full credit information, plus any licensing information which could potentially limit use of photographs by FrontlineSMS.
  3. By sending in your photos you are giving FrontlineSMS permission to use these photos online and in relevant publications. Photos will always be credited wherever used. If you would like the use of your photos to be limited please state this when you send photos along to FrontlineSMS.

When it's reasonable to be Unreasonable

One of the most exciting things about my work is the incredibly talented people I get to meet. Up-and-coming entrepreneurs with a never-say-die, get-up-and-go attitude. I'm continually inspired and more than happy to offer my help in any way I can, particularly to those looking to implement FrontlineSMS one way or another in their work. Today, two of these projects have made it through to the next round of a major competition and are looking for your help. I hope you feel equally inspired to show your support - it's only a few mouse clicks away and costs little. What's it all about?

The Unreasonable Institute unites up to 25 high-impact social entrepreneurs from around the world, who attend an intensive 10-week summer institute. There, entrepreneurs incubate their ventures with rigorous skills training and expert mentorship. At the end of the ten weeks, the Institute connects the Fellows with start-up capital and a global network of support. In short, the opportunity provided by the Institute will make a significant contribution to the growth of these early-stage initiatives.

Finalist #1: FrontlineSMS:Credit

FrontlineSMS:Credit, run by Ben Lyon, is one of the finalists. FrontlineSMS:Credit aims to make every formal financial service available to the entrepreneurial poor in 160 characters or less. By meshing the functionality of FrontlineSMS with local mobile payment systems, implementing institutions will be able to provide a full range of customizable services, from savings and credit to insurance and payroll. Ben is currently in Sierra Leone testing his system, and signing up local organisations for early pilots. Visit Ben's page on the competition website and support his pioneering work!

Finalist #2: Light Up Malawi

Light Up Malawi - run byRaina Kumra - is a venture which aims to bring 100% alternative energy to Malawi through policy reform and the creation of a sanctioned pilot program for all manufacturers of solar, biomass, and wind energy products. In a sign that collaboration is alive and well even among competition finalists, one of the key systems they plan to deploy is FrontlineSMS:Credit, which will be used to assist with the setting up of rural distribution programs, and allow for the creation of finance systems for village entrepreneus. Please show your support for Raina's work  by visiting her competition page here.

Both projects need pledges of just $10 from 650 individuals. The first 25 projects from the 37 finalists to raise $6,500 will secure their place on the summer program. Please take a moment to show your support. You pledge now and pay later, and it only takes a minute. Thank you!

(You can read more about how the Unreasonable Marketplace works here).