MEST, UNICEF Promote Innovation In Ghana

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Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST), East Legon has partnered with UNICEF Ghana to launch the MEST-UNICEF Hackathon, a three-day product development competition that aims to uncover innovations that will serve “hard-to-reach” communities in Ghana.

The programme which will take place from the 15th -17th January, 2014, with the theme “Solving Big Problems Using Little Technology”, will feature over 100 Ghana’s brightest tech minds as participants who will work in teams to develop practical web or mobile applications that address issues ranging from water supply tracking to access to information, and sanitation.

Participants will be joined by guests from the technology and business communities and members of the general public.

“New ideas and technologies are needed to serve the hardest to reach communities in Ghana. UNICEF aims to co-develop innovations that are driven by and suited to the needs of the most vulnerable,” UNICEF Ghana Country Representative, Susan Namondo Ngongi said.

On the last day of the programme, the teams will present their solutions to a panel of judges from UNICEF Ghana and MTN Ghana, and the top three teams will receive GHC5, 000, GHC2, 500 and GHC1, 000 respectively.

Ngongi said the partnership with MEST gives UNICEF the opportunity to encourage innovations by Ghanaians, for Ghanaian.

“This partnership will bring different sets of skills, viewpoints and influence to the table.”

“We believe that this hackathon will come up with innovative concepts that can be further refined to improve the lives of children in Ghana,” she added.

Meanwhile, MEST Managing Director, Ekua Odoom, said the school is dedicated to supporting young and bright Africans to start their own software companies to create wealth and jobs in Africa.

“Our goal is that by setting this pace we can inspire generations that follow to achieve greatness in the continent.”

“We know talent is equally distributed but wealth is not and by creating opportunities like this we are showing the world how inspirational, talented and promising the youth in Africa are,” she added.

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