The Africa Award is one of our newest awards that focuses on highlighting businesses, technology and individuals that are tackling poverty and injustices in sub-saharan Africa. As the Tech4Good awards open for nominations, we wanted to highlight some past winners of the award.
Last year’s winners were Jangala which enables internet access specifically for people in need of urgent humanitarian aid or longer-term developmental assistance. It was originally created for refugees living in the Jungle refugee camp in Calais.
Jangala created the ‘Big Box’ which is an internet connection device that maximises digital signals to increase reliability and the number of devices it can support. Big Box alone can connect 100 people, with an expansion of upto 5000 people, and can provide mobile wifi in places where there is little to no signal. It was created with refugees and vulnerable people in mind to keep them connected, reduce isolation, promote human rights, deliver education and improve life chances. It is robust and low cost and designed to require little or no technical support making it cheap and easy to deploy and maintain at a local level.
Jangala has deployed 20 Big Box systems worldwide in the last two years including sub-saharan Africa. Their work has provided crucial internet access in many situations: including for aid workers and internally displaced people in the aftermath of the Lombok earthquake, for students taking online secondary school courses in remote Kakuma in Kenya, and for refugees arriving by boat to the island of Lesbos in Greece. Jangala’s efforts to date have connected over 25,000 people.
Another previous winner of the award is Unlocking Talent Through Technology which is a project aimed at improving literacy and numeracy of primary school children in Malawi.
The Unlocking Talent project provides schools in Malawi with solar-powered tablets and specially-designed numeracy and literacy apps. In the app, a virtual teacher guides the child at every stage, providing clear explanations, practice and encouragement. All content is in the local language and follows the Malawian curriculum. Children work through the app at their own pace and get instant feedback.
The Unlocking Talent Through Technology program has been so successful, the Malawian Government is now making it part of its education policy. 90,000 children from 110 primary schools have benefited already. The tablets are also used out of school time with young people who aren’t in education, which has increased re-enrolment in schools.
To enter the award, please visit here. This Award is open to any individual, business, charity, social enterprise or other public body anywhere in the world but their work MUST be tackling poverty or social injustice and specifically benefiting people in sub-Saharan Africa.