Kisumu Girls Tops Africa in the Technovation Challenge

Technovation offers girls around the world the opportunity to learn the skills they need to emerge as tech entrepreneurs and leaders. Every year they invite 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:

  • Ideation — Identify a problem in the community
  • Technology — Develop a mobile app solution
  • Entrepreneurship — Build a business plan to launch the app
  • Pitch — Bring the business to market

The team of five girls — Ivy Akinyi, Macrine Akinyi, Cynthia Awuor, Stacy Adhiambo and Purity Christine; all students of Kisumu Girls High School, Kenya, didn’t leave anything to chance to make sure that they had one of the best mobile apps. They toiled night and day, thinking the app, sleeping the app. During the last school holiday, the girls decided to stay behind in school to finalize on their app, while their peers went home for the school break vacation. This has finally paid off.

Technovation
Young Girls listening to other pitch presentations at the Kisumu Regional Finals in May 2017 at LakeHub

Calling themselves Restorers, they are among the tens of teams that came from Kenya to particpate in this challenge. They also managed to beat all of them, and be the only team from Kenya and Africa to go to the finals.

Their app — iCut, is an android app that helps to fight Female Genital Mutilation in our society . It does this by providing a platform where people can report FGM cases and also FGM victims can get help.

Female genital mutilation (FGM) comprises all procedures that involve altering or injuring the female genitalia for non-medical reasons.

In August 2017, they will be attending the Tecnovation Challenge Finals in San Fransisco, USA, where they will be presenting their app before world leaders and tech investors. And they also have the opportunity to win guaranteed prize money of US$ 20,000 to launch their app if they become the 2017 winners.

The second closest team was Dynasty, with an app called NearJobs from Nakuru, Kenya, but which managed to secure a worthy position in the Runners Up category.

The girls were mentored from LakeHub, Kisumu under the tutelage of one able girls in tech champion Dorcas Owino.

Congratulation team Restorers. Only the sky’s the limit for you!