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Using modern tech stacks to solve old societal problems with Food Bank Connector

Food Bank Connector

The Challenge

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic a hunger crisis gripped the UK with approximately 1.9 million people needing to use a food bank in the UK in 2020.

Our user research highlighted that high demand strained an already pressured system, distribution systems were dated and not based on demand, donation and distribution systems were not connected. The systems were complicated for both those wishing to access support and those wishing to provide support.

Many had tried to solve this problem before but the existing resources we found were scattered and fragmented. An easy to use, consolidated solution was needed.

LAB’s cross-functional ‘Creativity for Good’ team saw the opportunity to combine their skills in technology, data, user experience and behavioural science to create a solution that could make a real difference.

Our Services:

  • MACH Architecture

  • Data

  • Integration

  • UX/UI

  • Behavioural science

  • Marketing


The Impact

Implementing flexibility as a strategy we created a small proof of concept that is completely scalable to support the project as its needs grow.

Core to our flexibility as a strategy principle, we started by creating a small proof of concept to prove out the connections, with the ability to scale as the project developed. We used the MACH Alliance’s MACHathon as the catalyst to develop the proof of concept (within just a week) on composable architecture, winning the Grand prize: MACHnificent Award.

We used atomic design processes throughout, creating a single source of resources for food bank user organisers, and supporters. User journeys were mapped and prototyped upfront, with every aspect of design in the project lifecycle being considered, including micro-interactions and character animations to be used in subsequent phases.

Our atomic design processes ensured speed, efficiency and consistency, from ideation to strategy, to final delivery.

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This is a really great example of how you can use different MACH technologies to solve a real world problem. It looks great, it really helps unstick multiple groups of stakeholders, and we thought it was the best overall solution to the assignment.

MACHathon Judge , Pascal Lagarde of Valtech.
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The Results

Not only did we win the grand prize, the MACHnificent award in MACH alliance’s MACHathon, but he proof of concept attracted lots of publicity and interest for the plight of food banks. As a result, our strategic technology partners have waived their licence costs to helpfully roll out the solution and we have attracted investment to help fund the next stages of the project.

Food Bank Connector Results
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