While organizations such as HiiL are scouting for local talent that can create exciting and possibly, scalable solutions for justice innovation, search engine and internet giant, Google, has launched a campaign that will offer up to USD 2 million to Kenya-based non-profit and social enterprises that will showcase a compelling technology-based project on a local or regional scale.
Dubbed Google Impact Challenge (GIC), the program will see the sharing of KES 200 million across four winners and eight nearly-winning participants. All groups must be a registered charity in the country.
Notably, this is the first time such a competition has graced the country. The same competition is taking place in Nigeria and South Africa,
“We believe technology can help local and national organizations to better reach their goals and solve some of the continent’s most pressing challenges, and we are eager to back people who are using technology in new ways to make a positive difference in their communities,” said Charles Murito, Country Manager, Google Kenya.
“We also want to highlight the healthy state of social enterprise in Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa today, and encourage non-profits to consider how technology and innovation can help them reach their goals,” he added.
Application and participation
The window for application is lengthy since submissions will stretch for the next six months.
Upon conclusion of applications, the public will be given a chance to vote for an idea it deems exciting. Judges will then pick three more winners after participants pitch their solutions.
Other than cash incentives, the winning groups will receive guidance, technical assistance, and mentorship from Google.
The award ceremony will be staged on November 26.
Judges are looking forward to submissions that are impactful in terms of life improvement and the number of people they will benefit if deployed successfully deployed. Secondly, GIC targets the technological or innovation aspect of the solution. Sustainability, scalability, and feasibility in terms of community impact, to mention a few, are additional characteristics of what constitutes a winning idea.
Past GIC programs have taken place in 15 countries. More than 10,000 non-profit submissions have been forwarded. At the moment, the Challenge has made 370 grants.