Visible Connect #TeamTuesday: Meet Movers and Shakers

In 2021, Visible proudly announced the third cohort of its annual Visible Connect Accelerator Program, which supports nonprofit organizations changing their communities using mobile technology. In partnership with Uncharted, Visible Connect awards each nonprofit in the accelerator a $15,000 financial grant and free mobile devices with one year of Visible service. Visible and Uncharted will work alongside these game-changing entrepreneurs to help them elevate their organizations and connect them with the resources, services, expertise and relationships they need to accelerate their impact. Over the next few weeks, Visible will continue to introduce all six of the inspiring nonprofit within our cohort, honing in on how they’re using mobile technology to create meaningful change in our community.

Glenn Cantave is the executive director of Movers and Shakers, a nonprofit using augmented reality to write Black and Brown narratives into American curricula.

What inspired you to launch Movers and Shakers?
We started Movers & Shakers with the intention of changing the way America portrays history through its monuments, public spaces and school curricula. We realized pretty quickly that augmented reality was an accessible medium to present historically excluded narratives to the youth.

Who are you trying to reach with your programs and why?
Millions of black and brown children are forced to learn a Eurocentric perspective of history. Our history books implicitly say that we don’t matter. We are building a platform that tells an inclusive form of history that reflects triumphs that have been historically excluded from the popular canon.

Furthermore, children of color are typically exposed to cutting edge technology later in their lives than their white counterparts. This speaks to the acute under representation of black and brown creators in the technology space. Our goal is to expose black and brown youth to cutting edge technology earlier in life so that we can inspire a new generation of creators to build a future that includes our vision.

Do you have criteria for selecting the icons you choose to create an immersive experience?
We are working with local city councils and leaders to curate under sung heroes to add to our monuments catalog. Our vision is for children in Baltimore to have access to stories that are native to New Orleans, Chicago, etc. Long term we will have a large catalog of stories throughout the country with corresponding augmented reality monuments, educational material for our digital archive and culturally responsive pedagogy to be deployed throughout the US.

How has COVID -19 changed the landscape for Movers and Shakers?
Our original trajectory was to create augmented reality monuments for public spaces. With the emergence of COVID-19 we saw an opportunity to bring our content into the homes of parents and children. Our app, Kinfolk, is designed so that anyone with a smartphone can digitally (and safely) place our augmented reality monuments into their living room or classroom

What role will mobile technology play in helping you achieve your mission?
Accessibility is fundamental to our mission. 81% of Americans own smartphones, a number that increases every year. Our goal is to put the technology of tomorrow into the hands of the communities who typically get it last. From our view, mobile technology is the most effective way to make that happen.

At this stage in your organization's growth, why did you apply to Visible Connect?
We applied to Visible connect as we were anticipating our app launch and knew that we would need the support to scale. At this stage, we are just starting to hire full-time employees and are navigating the challenges that come with growth. Visible Connect has connected us with experts from various disciplines who are helping us shape the trajectory of our company.

To learn more about Kinfolk AR, you can visit the historical archive or download for the app from the Apple or Google Play stores.