Pritha Gopalan

Pritha Gopalan, Yalla!: A trusted, scalable software solution that connects relief agencies with vetted volunteers

Date grant awarded: 06/19/2017

Yalla! is a software that allows relief agencies and volunteers to customize volunteer participation and effectively support newly-arrived Syrian refugee families in New Jersey. Relief agencies and non-profits are stretched beyond their capacity in meeting the considerable health, educational, and financial needs of families forced to migrate due to the Syrian crisis.

Almost 300 Syrian refugees now live in New Jersey, and the groundswell of volunteerism they have attracted is critical to helping them rebuild their lives. With proper volunteer vetting and coordination in place, relief agencies can partner with volunteers to effectively help families gain language proficiency, social acceptance, and economic independence. Pritha Gopalan, Jodi Paroff, and Tahi Hunter identified this need and hope that Yalla! can be scaled to support refugee resettlement globally.