Tigo Rwanda and the non-profit organization Reach for Change have announced the three winners of the Tigo Digital Changemakers competition, which rewards projects that aim at socioeconomic transformation through ICT.
The winners of the competition are:
Origene Igiraneza (O’genius Panda)
After four years of research O'genius Priority Ltd has developed a digital platform to help students and 78% of Rwandan schools get access to practical skills through digital labs that bring the learner in a virtual reality as well as inspire children, especially girls, to join science and technology. O'genius Panda simplifies subjects otherwise labeled ‘difficult’ through simulations, animations and applications in real life. It also provides an opportunity for teachers to make extra income through online classes.
Alain Patrick Irere Hirwa (Tubiganire TV)
In a bid to reduce teenage pregnancies, Tubiganire TV is a mobile platform that stimulates Rwandan parents to open up to their children and get involved in their sexual reproductive health experiences. Its platform uses a fictional TV series that is to be aired both on TV and on our mobile application.
Bobson Rugambwa (MVend)
MVend is a mobile-based core-banking system that enables members of Village Savings and Loan Associations (VSLA)to build their financial track record by saving digitally. A complete mobile banking suite for savings groups that give them the ability to save, borrow, pay bills, and transfer funds, all electronically, all by mobile, while maintaining the group's three-person authorization via 3 PIN transaction approvals.
Each of the winners received Rwf 8.2 million and will enjoy access to Reach for Change’s Incubator programme, which includes business training, access to a global network of other social entrepreneurs and much more.
“I am excited to have made it this far and won the competition,” said Bobson Rugambwa. “This gives us the opportunity to do more. We will be using the money to fund a recruitment drive to take our product to more people.”
Tadzie Madzima-Bosha, Communications Manager of Reach for Change Africa, said that the organizers were looking for three social entrepreneurs with extraordinary projects that use digital tools and technology to create or grow their impact.
“We are excited about these new Changemakers and we look forward to working with them closely to see them achieve more social impact and growth in their organizations by combining their passion, with technology and advice from Tigo and coaching from the Reach for Change Incubator,” she said.
According to Tigo Rwanda’s CEO, Philip Amoateng, the three Tigo Digital Changemakers competition winners were chosen out of 130 applicants and were selected following a rigorous vetting process that involved Tigo, Reach for Change and external experts.
Tigo has been actively supporting local ICT solutions that improve the communities’ welfare, while also creating job opportunities and skills transfer.
“These investments in the competition are important for Tigo because we are part and parcel of the Rwandan community and there is clear evidence that supporting digital and financial inclusion initiatives, such as this competition, will improve people’s lives,” Amoateng said.
The Director General for Innovation and Business Development at the Ministry of Information Technology and Communications, Claudette Irere, said the country’s digital transformation is a journey and this initiative fits very well in that journey.
“To Tigo and Reach for Change, thank you for your contribution towards making Rwanda a better and more conducive space for innovators. You walk the talk,” Irere said. “We have a lot to achieve together: connectivity for all and digital skills for all by 2024, you name it. We are glad we can count on you as partners in this journey.”