As of today 149 Spark* Changemakers have significantly and measurably changed the lives of 84,142 people living in poverty across East Africa, South Africa and the Pacific.
In just a few weeks we will welcome seventeen new entrepreneurs into our network.
We are excited to announce the successful candidates for our July 2015 program:
Aghan Oscar Joshua – Corelimited
Oscar believes that it is possible to reduce the amount of waste in landfills, curb deforestation rates, and vandalism. This is why his company, Core Limited, makes affordable, high quality and durable products using mixed post-consumer waste blended with sand. All this, while directly and indirectly providing jobs to at-risk youth.
Beverly Mbeke – Kuhustle
With the high rate of unemployment in Kenya and across Africa, Beverly has come up with a way to tap into the global market through an online platform. Kuhustle is an online marketplace that sources jobs across the globe and use local African expertise to deliver on these projects. Kuhustle offers a platform that is tailored to the African skills, payment procedures, soft skills and resources with training that is quality focused addressing the African need.
Caroline Mtongolo – Zoi Investment Limited
Healthy living is important for the survival of a community. Even more important is provision of a source of livelihood for the community. Caroline, through her company, Zoi Investment Limited has come up with a way to merge the two and provide an all round solution through mushroom production. This creates jobs for people living in poverty.
Disability is not inability. This is Erick’s belief and having seen the discrimination that disabled individuals face, yet they have the qualifications needed, he started an organization whose main focus is to empower needy youth living with disability. His organisation provide online employment to them by offering online jobs.
Goodluck Gamaliel – Iko Eco
The greatest problem in Africa is waste disposal. Many African countries are not equipped to deal with the amount of waste its citizens produce, leading to public health risk and environmental damage. This results in the citizens burning, burying, or dumping their waste. Said practices release dangerous carcinogens into the atmosphere resulting in health problems. Iko Eco implements incentivized and accessible collection programs to encourage the safe and appropriate disposal of plastic waste, while creating jobs.
Lack of employment or the skills necessary has resulted in many a women turning into prostitution. However, most women engaging in prostitution to earn a living and are willing to embrace alternative sources of income. That is why Eunice and her organisation are working with these women to access viable alternative sources of income. The organisation is providing a support system for women who are willing to leave prostitution as well as preventing women from resorting to prostitution as a source of income.
Harvey Herr – Mapjam
Hosting a unique and fantastic event requires a combination of a good venue and great artists. Finding these in a country that is full of artists can be quite tricky. Enter Harvey and his company, MapJam. MapJam is a marketplace for booking performing artists and select event services (i.e. audiovisual) and a contractual management platform for contracting local performing artists and event service providers. This ensures that all the processes involved are automated into an agreement interface between parties, removing speculative pricing & generally make it more affordable to rent services & equipment.
Affordable and clean cooking and lighting energy is hard to come by, especially for the communities who need it the most. Tackling this and helping communities living in poverty is Isaac with his organisation that manufactures fuel briquettes, sell and buy cooking stoves and solar lighting products. The best part, the organisation also provides micro-loans to communities in the slums thus ensuring affordability and uptake.
Josephine Kulea – Samburu Girls Foundation
Female Genital Mutilation and child marriage is still very rampant in Samburu. Young girls are assigned to young unmarried men for sex only while others are married off to older men. Josephine and her organization, Samburu Girls Foundation, have taken up the difficult task of rescuing the girls who are facing the above harmful cultural practices and place them in schools.
Leila Maalim – TasKwetu
Kenyans abroad send money to support their families as well as invest. Yet, many have reported having have gone through the painful experience of having their hard earned moneys wasted. Their relatives or friends misuse the money sent for their personal gains. Kenyans abroad need not worry any more! Leila, through her organisation TasKwetu provides an online professional avenue committed to availing contracted, vetted errand runners who execute tasks on behalf of Kenyans in the diaspora.
Michael Wambugu – Nu Bree Dairy Ltd
Dairy Farmers receive low prices for their milk and suffer from inconsistent pricing and purchasing patterns from their brokers and middlemen. Bulk purchasers of milk such as hotels and schools go through the same experience. This spills over to residents in urban areas. Nu Bree has come to bridge this gap by focusing on the distribution of whole healthy milk in these residential estates and to people who need it at an affordable price, and the right quality.
Peggy Mativo – PACE
Children are the most vulnerable group in our communities. Going to school is important for the next generation of leaders. The problem is, there are not enough teachers in public schools and especially in slum areas. Peggy, through her organisation, PACE, recruits talented youthful volunteers, train and place them to serve as tutors and mentors to students in under-resourced public schools.
Cassava has been a staple food crop across Kenya. It is therefore important to ensure that this food crop is of high quality to provide nutritional value to the consumers. This is why Peris formed an organization that works on the improvement of the quality of root crops like cassava by obtaining biofortified yellow cassava clones, establishing nurseries before moving and issuing them to farmers in cassava growing areas. The organisation is also trying to introduce biofortified yellow cassava flour to replace the white variety that has little nutritional value.
Said Twahir – Kencoco
Thousands of women who use firewood as their cooking fuel are at risk of health and breathing related problems. That, together with inefficiency of the cooking fuels and other stoves is what Kencoco is addressing through providing briquettes that emit less harmful smoke and last longer, thus saving the family money that is redirected to other life sustaining expenses.
Sam Okiya Dindi – Mazingira Yetu Technologies
Water borne diseases are preverlent in various parts of the country. This is due to lack of access to clean drinking water. Most households draw water from open streams and unprotected shallow wells that are contaminated with human and animal waste. Sam, through his organisation Mazingira Yetu Technologies, seeks to address this problem through affordable portable water purifier in the form of a ceramic pot. The efficient smoked ceramic water purifier is a pot made out of black, red and sandy soils mixed at a ratio of 40:40:20, able to purify water by reducing turbidity/cloudiness, total dissolved solutes, level of salinity and microbial population.
Violette Wambua – Networking in Heels
Women are the cornerstone of any community and with the world seeing more and more professional women contributing to the economy, it is important to provide a forum for them to exchange ideas, connect and grow. That is what Violette and Networking In Heels does by running networking forums through which women meet, exchange ideas and opportunities in different careers and businesses. legitimate channels.
Vitalis Kahendah – Hopewell
This idea of an integrated curriculum is fairly new. The current approach is that the not so bright kids are sent to village/youth polytechnics for skills training. This negatively affects their self-esteem and confidence as well as limiting their potential for acquiring knowledge, skills and values normally found in high school environments. Vitalis through Hopewell ensures that students get skills to enable them earn money to pay fees and other needs. Hopewell runs a charitbale education centre that incorporates a high school, vocational training division and a community resource centre, where they admit orphaned and vulnerable children who pursue an integrated learning program in which trade/livelihood skills are taken alongside normal curriculum.
Welcome to the Spark* tribe Changemakers!