Today, a coalition comprised of ADCEM Pharmaceuticals, the Dr. Ameyo Stella Adadevoh (DRASA) Health Trust, the Enterprise Development Centre (EDC) of Pan-‐Atlantic University, eLab, and the Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN) Nigeria announced the #HackTheGerms innovation competition to address the issue of poor health and hygiene in Nigeria’s rural and urban communities.
“We believe strongly in promoting and supporting Nigerian entrepreneurs and enterprises, that’s why we’re hosting this competition,” said Wale Anifowoshe, General Manager of EDC. He went on to share that the goal of the competition is to help Nigerians unleash impactful ideas and turn them into promising new ventures – creating jobs, accelerating innovation, and strengthening economic stability.
The goal of the competition is to develop a community dispenser that will ensure ongoing availability and access to hand sanitizer to help reduce the spread of infectious diseases and improve the health of Nigerians. Designs should be innovative (a new concept or a revision of existing concept), not for individual/personal use (can hold a larger volume of sanitizer and can be refilled), cost-‐effective and scalable, environmentally friendly, and able to be locally produced in Nigeria. The winning dispenser design will go to the market and support the distribution of ADCEM and DRASA’s locally manufactured hand sanitizer product.
When asked why the focus is on health and hygiene, Adeyemi Adewole of ADCEM said, “In a country of more than 190 million people with a fragmented healthcare system and poor hygiene in communities, we are at major risk of a significant infectious disease outbreak. We keep having small outbreaks here and there but it’s only a matter of time before something deadly like Ebola comes again. We saw what happened to Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone and we can’t afford a major outbreak in Nigeria.”
DRASA’s Managing Director, Niniola Soleye added, “We all remember that when Ebola was in Nigeria, everyone was paying attention to their health and hygiene. Soap was everywhere. Hand sanitizer was everywhere and people were using it. Nowadays, that is no longer the case. We want to change that, prioritize hand hygiene, and make sure we keep our communities safe and healthy.”
The selected semi-‐finalists of the #HackTheGerms innovation competition will have the opportunity to participate in GEN’s Global Entrepreneurship Week in Lagos in November 2017 to connect with experts and pitch their idea. The winner will get a free trip to the Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Istanbul, Turkey in April 2018 to pitch their solution to a global audience. They will also participate in the eLab Social Innovation Accelerator for support and access to mentors, executive coaches, marketing and financial experts, and other resources to further refine and develop their innovation.
Wale Ajiboye, Co-‐Founder of eLab said, “We’re open to innovative ideas from all Nigerians. Our country is blessed with talented people who have fantastic ideas of how to address major challenges and impact lives. They just need support and that’s what we’re doing with this competition. We’re providing what they need to realize their innovation, scale their ideas, and grow a business.”
If you have an innovative idea, visit www.drasatrust.org/hack-‐the-‐germs or email: firstname.lastname@example.org for more details. All submissions must be received by 11:59 pm WAT on Friday, October 20th, 2017.
About ADCEM Pharmaceuticals – ADCEM is an indigenous technology and innovation-‐driven healthcare company finding innovative and creative ways to deliver quality healthcare. They manufacture high quality and affordable pharmaceutical products and provide quality kidney disease equipment, consumables, vascular access products, pneumatic tube systems and turn-‐key services with a focus on those at the bottom of the pyramid.
About Dr. Ameyo Stella Adadevoh (DRASA) Health Trust – DRASA’s work protects society from infectious diseases and public health threats through the advancement of infection control practices, hygiene and sanitation behaviors, and outbreak preparedness measures. DRASA was established in memory of Dr. Ameyo Stella Adadevoh, the doctor who correctly diagnosed and contained the first case of Ebola in Nigeria, saving countless lives.
About the Enterprise Development Centre (EDC) of Pan-‐Atlantic University – EDC provides holistic business development and support services to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria through various capacity building and training programs. Their mission is to build a network of entrepreneurs and leaders in the profit and Nonprofit sectors through a commitment to continuous learning, process improvement, and business integrity.
About eLab – eLab’s mission is to create a vibrant platform to provide support for entrepreneurs working in sectors that can create massive impact in communities including agriculture, energy, FinTech, health, and education. Their aim is to accelerate social innovations within the space to solve pressing issues in Nigeria and beyond.
About Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN) Nigeria – GEN is a year-‐round platform of programs and initiatives aimed at creating one global entrepreneurial ecosystem. From inspiring and educating emerging entrepreneurs to advance research and connecting global leaders, GEN Nigeria identifies effective initiatives that positively impact society and interventions that target the most challenging obstacles for entrepreneurs.
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