For the past two weeks a group of tech-savvy Ethiopian American social activists in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area have been working on building an online hub where people can post and track missing loved ones in Libya, Yemen and South Africa, as well as other countries where Ethiopian migrant workers face constant dangers. The result is a new website called Adega911.com, which the creators say is “dedicated to helping our compatriots, who find themselves under trying circumstances, in troubled areas of the world and in need of intervention to save their lives.”
Adega 911 allows users to report information both publicly and anonymously regarding missing persons that will in turn will be publicized via social media platforms. “We will post and share your plea on Facebook and Twitter,” the webmaster said. “The site plans to be a place for getting pertinent list of resources, teach about the dangers of crossing through unstable countries and harsh environments, and an open space for dialoguing with community organizations on how to deal with migrant concerns. We believe we have a lot to learn but wanted to share what we have done.”
In addition, the website aims to “provide a forum for the families of migrant workers, loved ones and others to confidentially post any information about them in order to help locate and remove them from harm’s way. It also serves as a forum for the public to anonymously post any helpful information that may lead to the rescue of any missing persons; provide a centralized place where individuals, aid organizations, government entities and others can confidently and securely offer any assistance at their disposal to help in this effort; coordinate any offered help to bring about the desired outcome of bringing misplaced workers and others home or relocating them to safety; build a database of information about conditions or other factors that may be relevant; as well as raise public awareness of the plight of migrant workers and others trapped in these circumstances by providing accurate and reliable information about their conditions.”
The site is still a work in progress and the creators say they welcome constructive criticism.