Toulouse, France, Monday, 30th of March, 2020
The Airbus Humanity Lab is running a hackathon to develop solutions against Covid-19.
The focus is on PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) and ventilators. We have many ideas and prototypes popping up all around the world.
As I am in confinement, I am working remotely and following the proposed solutions.
Indeed, as part of the Airbus Africa community, we are pushing to ensure that all solutions that will be developed in this hackathon can be suitable to be deployed in Africa.
I am reading my emails, and there it is, the first chromosome of MABACO. I see it and say in my head: Yes, this is it! This is great for Africa.
I hit the “reply to all” button, asking for the initial idea to be further elaborated.
What is this initial idea?
The idea is simple and quite brilliant.
“3D printing is nice but slow. Metal sheet can be quickly produced on a large scale.”
Nobody picks up the idea. It’s going to die in its premature conception.
I am here and see the value of Africa; I will find a way to make it a reality, I told myself.
This is the first lesson about inclusion and diversity and why Africans must be where the creation starts. I cannot imagine how many ideas have not been implemented because no one from an African country was there to defend the positive impact of that idea for us.
We must be present as Africans when making decisions to ensure that Africa is not sitting on the sidelines of history.
I love this concept. Yet, It is just an embryo for the moment. I do not have the skills and the tools to dig into industrial workable solutions. For this, I need computer-assisted design skills and the associated software. I don’t have any of them at my disposal!