Supply chain disruptions due to the pandemic necessitated a fast cloud solution to repurpose an existing mobile app for the task.

Millions of people are now locked down and in isolation. There is a need for a free mobile app that helps community groups, Facebook groups, churches and associations to mobilize their volunteers to get help to those who need it.

One such app with the potential to facilitate such community help, called Reach, was already being used to arrange delivery of vehicles to tens of thousands of self-isolating people in the US, the UK and New Zealand. The company that developed it, Car Delivery Network (CDN), was inspired to repurpose Reach to help connect more people to the community resources they need.

CDN recognized that its platform—software that usually connects car manufacturers with car dealers and allows tasks to be tracked—was agile and sophisticated enough to be repurposed quickly to help coordinate volunteering efforts. They subsequently engaged the help of technology services company Rackspace to provide the redundancy and security of an enterprise-grade application to repurpose the app and host it on Rackspace’s OpenStack public cloud.

Rackspace ensured the modified app was tested and available in just four days, enriched with the inherent scalability to reach volunteers around the world if needed.

Said Mike Thorby, founder and CEO, CDN and Reach: “CDN saw an opportunity to leverage our Reach app to help those in need. We are happy to be able to connect millions of requests across the world, thanks to Rackspace’s infrastructure, customer commitment and support.”

Reach is already being used by more than 30 community groups in the UK and a growing network in the US. Translations into French and Spanish are underway to support a global roll-out. Reach will also continue to be available in the future for continued community support beyond COVID-19.

For organizations participating in COVID-19 relief efforts, Rackspace has set aside $10 million in free OpenStack public cloud hosting resources over the next six months. Rackspace teams remain dedicated to providing seamless support and experience for customers.

Said Matt Stoyka, Chief Solutions Officer, Rackspace: “Rackspace is dedicated to supporting our customers through these unprecedented times. CDN needed a technology solution that helped them adapt to this changing environment and ensure they were able to reliably leverage and scale their cloud and web-based applications.”