A 5-member girls’ team from Kisumu Girls High School in Kisumu County has been selected among the finalists in this year’s Tecnovation Challenge and are set to represent Kenya at the 2017 World Pitch Summit in San Francisco, California, USA.
The Kisumu Girls team – calling themselves Restorers – emerged top among the 10 teams that had initially made it to the semi-finals of the contest from Kenya. The semi-finalists and their respective projects were Bentley (ASAP), Dynasty (NearJobs), Fiwana (Rstar4), Mad Scientists (SMART-KUZA), Scorpion (ITTACH APP), Team Bloom (Educracy), Techknockouts (ProReporter), Techno Royals (Hostel Plus) and The Elites (DOMS APP).
(TOP: A Restorers team member – in uniform – with her mother when they went to process their travel documents to US for the World Pitch Summit. BELOW: Restorers other team members. In the red blouse is Patricia Owino, the team’s mentor. Photos: LakeHub).
The Dynasty team – who developed NearJobs app – emerged runners up and won’t have an opportunity to pitch at the Summit. The team came from Nakuru County.
The Restorers team – comprised of Ivy Akinyi, Macrine Akinyi, Cynthia Awuor, Stacy Adhiambo and Purity Christine – developed a mobile app called iCut according to an article in AmazingKisumu.
The Restorers’ project, iCut, is an Android app that helps fight Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in the society by providing a platform where people can report FGM cases and where FGM victims can also get help. FGM comprises all procedures that involve altering or injuring the female genitalia for non-medical reasons.
The World Pitch Summit will take place during the Tecnovation Challenge Finals in San Fransisco from August 7 – 11, 2017. All the finalists will present their projects before a global panel of world leaders and tech investors and compete for the US $20,000 grand praize which is meant to enable the winning team launch their app. All the finalists will also receive cash prizes of US $5,000 each.
Apart from Kenya, the Restorers team will be representing the whole of Africa at the Tecnovation Challenge Finals.
Technovation provides girls from across the world with the opportunity to learn the necessary skills to emerge as tech entrepreneurs and leaders. Every year, through the Technovation Challenge, it invites girls to identify a problem in their community, and then challenge them to solve it. Girls work in teams to build both a mobile app and a business plan to launch that app, supported by mentors and guided by a curriculum.
Technovation’s curriculum takes students through 4 stages of launching a mobile app startup, inspired by the principles of design thinking – that is Ideation (identify a problem in the community), Technology (develop a mobile app solution), Entrepreneurship (build a business plan to launch the app) and Pitch (bring the business to market).