Winners have emerged for the first Google Impact Challenge in Nigeria with twelve non-profits and social enterprises each awarded a share of $2m in grant funding.
Four winners Vetsark, The Cece Yara Foundation, HelpMum, Project Enable Africa will receive $250 000 each, while the eight runners-up will each get $125 000.
- Vetsark – Plans to launch Alpha Prime Disease Surveillance Technology to predict, prevent, and control pests and disease outbreaks in Nigeria to protect crops and livestock.
- The Cece Yara Foundation – Established the first toll-free child helpline and child advocacy centre in Nigeria and aims to connect victims with professional services through the web, SMS, and mobile apps.
- HelpMum – Using mobile technology, HelpMum provides clean birth kits to ensure that pregnant women are given the best possible care during delivery, irrespective of where they live.
- Project Enable Africa – The digital inclusion project promotes the access of people with disabilities and their caregivers to ICT skills and opportunities.
The winners were chosen by judges and members of the public at the grand event held in Lagos on Tuesday evening.
According to a statement by the organisers, funding will be allocated in tranches and assigned to each enterprise as they reach a set of predefined milestones specific to each venture, while winners and runners-up will also receive support from Google to reach their goals and meet those milestones.
Google Impact Challenge Africa, a competition to find the most innovative African non-profits and social enterprises using technology to solve societal problems, opened in May and more than 5,000 (Five thousand) entries were received in Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa.
In her address at the ceremony, Google Country Director in Nigeria, Juliet Ehimuan-Chiazor, noted that many African innovators are doing great work with real impact and Google is keen to shine a light on their work, and also give a financial boost to their projects and ideas.
“We believe technology can help local and national organisations to better reach their goals and solve some of the continent’s most pressing challenges, and Google is eager to provide support to individuals and organisations using technology in new ways to make a positive difference,” she stated.
Judges on the night included Chairman CEO Channels media group, John Momoh, Chairman/CEO; Mrs. Parminder Vir, Chief Executive Officer, Tony Elumelu Foundation; Rapper, CEO of Chocolate City Music Group, MI Abaga; Philanthropist and Executive Director of Nigeria Network of NGOs Oluseyi Oyebisi; Managing General Partner, EchoVC Partners Eghosa Omoigui and Google Nigeria’s Country Director Juliet Ehimuan-Chiazor.