Our tech for good venture Hack The Planet devised and developed an interactive WhatsApp story based on ChatGPT to make violence, inclusiveness, bullying and prejudice a subject of discussion among young people.

Incidents of knife and violence among young people are a growing problem in the Netherlands. The number of underage suspects of knife violence has more than doubled in recent years. To make the social problem of violence, inclusivity, bullying and prejudice among young people visible and discussable, our tech for good venture Hack The Planet came up with an innovative solution: HelpMaya. HelpMaya is an interactive story set on WhatsApp.

Interactive WhatsApp story
By sending a WhatsApp message to the fictional character Maya, you will get to know her and her friends. She takes you into her life for five days. Maya sends messages, photos and videos at variable times that provide a look at several situations. The story has an interactive element: depending on the reaction of the recipient, it takes a different turn. The story can therefore end well or badly. HelpMaya shows that choices can sometimes have major consequences, both positive and negative.

ChatGPT integration
It is the first time that the popular messaging service WhatsApp is used to discuss issues that are currently alive in society and among young people in a confrontational but also light-hearted way. HelpMaya's interactive element uses ChatGPT. Based on users' answers, Maya automatically takes a certain decision, so that the story develops.

Broad collaboration
For this project, Hack The Planet set up a broad collaboration between the municipality of The Hague, the police force of The Hague, young people from the neighborhood and film agency Wolfstreet. Hack The Planet came up with the scenario and together with the other parties, photo and video images were made for the story, in which the young people played the roles. Teaching materials for schools were created by the educational start-up Schoolblocks.
The WhatsApp conversation with Maya starts by sending her a message via The user is immediately in a conversation with Maya and is slowly drawn into the compelling story. When the story is over after five days, a link is made with aid agencies where young people with problems can go or where they can report situations. With HelpMaya we hope to eventually make young people more aware of their actions and reactions.

In 2023, HelpMaya received the audience and bronze jury prize in the Education category at the Lovie Awards, the most prestigious award for digital work in Europe.