Four teams of Ugandan innovators were announced to receive seed financing worth UGX 308million after emerging as the winners of the UNICEF Uganda Innovation fund challenge. Outbox in partnership with UNICEF announced on Thursday 08th April 2021 that four Ugandan innovations win UNICEF fund challenge to receive financial support alongside other benefits.
The four selected teams and innovative solutions will be supported by this funding from UNICEF, with each innovator receiving UGX 77million. “The provisional winners, selected by an independent panel of judges, will also receive six-month mentorship, social business training, linkages to partners in the market to enable them to realize and implement their ideas,” UNICEF said.
Four Ugandan innovations win UNICEF fund challenge to achieve SDGs
The four innovations that emerged as the winners of the UNICEF fund challenge include;
SeatPack aims at solving the lack of affordable, classroom furniture by providing a school bag that turns into a mobile bamboo classroom chair with a writing surface to help Primary School Children read and write in more dignified conditions indoors and outdoors, while social distancing for safety against Covid19.
Safe Water Harvester: A solar-powered device that traps humidity/water vapour from the atmosphere providing clean and affordable water to the underserved rural communities, schools & communities at any time.
Fine Reed commercializes energy solutions to promote SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) 4 (Quality Education), 5 (Gender Equality), 7 (Affordable and Clean Energy), 8 (Decent Work and Economic Growth), and 13 (Climate Action).
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KAINO Africa: An EdTech (Education Technology) product that provides nursery schools and parents in Uganda with access to quality curriculum aligned STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) blended lesson guides which they deliver to their learners using our web and mobile applications and is able to teach children how to read and write in only one month.
The UNICEF fund challenge and applications were launched on 22 December 2020. The UNICEF Uganda Innovation Fund Challenge, funded by UNICEF, supports innovative approaches and solutions to address challenges faced by children in Uganda. ‘A total of 285 people applied to participate in the fund of which 168 were ineligible. The eligible 117 applications were vetted and reviewed through a competitive process,’ UNICEF stated in the press release.
Through the challenge, UNICEF Uganda presented an opportunity for those ready to use an innovative solutions approach to improve the welfare of children in marginalized communities. The challenge focuses on early childhood survival and development; to increase the availability of basic education and youth development for girls and boys aged 13 to 19; and to ensure child freedom from every form of violence, abuse, neglect and harmful behaviour.
Richard Zulu, founding partner and Outbox Hub Lead said, ‘The UNICEF Uganda Innovation Fund Challenge is an initiative that will further grow the social entrepreneurship movement in Uganda, where young people and other private sector actors are encouraged and supported to address societal challenges in sustainable ways. Getting the private sector to co-create and collaborate with development partners is a good recipe for innovation.’
Dr Munir Safieldin the UNICEF Representative in Uganda said they encourage innovation as it offers out of the box and non-conventional solutions to challenges facing the realization of children’s rights.
“With new innovative thinking, we can take child survival and development to new higher levels of excellence. Innovations offer agility, efficiency and effectiveness,” said Dr Munir Safieldin, UNICEF Representative in Uganda.