Henri Nyakarundi andÂ Elizabeth KperrunÂ are theÂ winners of theÂ first edition of the âICT for Social Goodâ, financed byÂ Innovazione per lo SviluppoÂ Program andÂ Fondazione Mission Bambini Onlus. They will be officially awarded duringÂ the Open Days of Innovation, scheduled in Milan, on November 6th and 7th.
By Viviana Brun
The first edition of the “ICT for Social Good” Grant started in March 2017, when Ong2.0 openedÂ a call to invite social innovators to apply forÂ a prize of 12.000 euros – offered by Fondazione Cariplo and Compagnia di San Paolo within the ProgrammeÂ âInnovazione per lo sviluppoâ – to sustain and support innovative ideas created with a bottom-up approach in low-income countries. Fondazione Mission BambiniÂ added a special grant named âICT 4 Childrenâ equals toÂ 10.000â¬,Â to the project focused on children more aligned with the Foundationâs mission.Â The aim of both Grants was to sustain, as much as possible,Â local entrepreneurs but also to inform the development sector â too often still based on traditional intervention models â about local innovations. In the Global South, many amazing projects, realities and innovative ideas are created daily with a bottom-up approach. Unfortunately, often these ideas are not fully recognised and they face difficulties in being involved in international development projects. However, they represent a good starting point to build a new approach to the international cooperation and local development.
In two months, 233 applications were received from 57 countries in the world.Â The Scientific CommitteeÂ of the Grant â composed of representatives fromÂ SocialFare,Â Fundacion Paraguaya, Moxoff,Â E4impactÂ andÂ NestaÂ â worked hard to evaluate the projects, paying close attention toÂ innovation, both from the point of view of technology and of the methodologies and approaches that have been adopted. The main focus was on theÂ positive impact the projectsÂ could generate at the local level.
Let’sÂ take a closer look at the two winners.
Henri NyakarundiÂ and his mobile solar kiosk
The Rwandan social entrepreneur, Henri Nyakarundi is the founder of Ared -African Renewable Energy Distributor- a hardware, technology and service company who developed Shiriki Hub, a mobile solar kiosk, which offers customers a convenient low-cost solution to charge their phones, to browse the web and to have free offline access to digital content such as news and information on health and education.Â The Scientific Committee of the Grant evaluated Nyakarundi’s project asÂ the best one among the 233 applications received.
Elizabeth KperrunÂ and her mobile apps for children
Elizabeth Kperrun is the co-founder ofÂ Lizzie’s Creations, an initiative that aims to revive the African traditional culture and storytelling through digital tools.Â She creates fun educational mobile apps that teach kids using Africa’s native languages. Elizabeth startup has been evaluated as the second best project among all the applications received and the best proposal for childhood, so she wins the category dedicated to the use of ICT forÂ children.
- Read more about the mobile apps realised by Lizzie’s Creations
- Get to know Elizabeth better. Read the interview.
The winners will be officially awarded duringÂ the Open Days of Innovation, scheduled in Milan, on November 6th and 7th 2017.