Earlier this year Praekelt.org, Turn.io and Devex hosted the Chat for Impact Summit powered by WhatsApp.
The initative had the aim of supporting and accelerating the work that non-governmental organisations (NGOs) are doing to provide vulnerable, disempowered and minority communities with easy and secure access to vital information and support via WhatsApp.
You may recognise Praekelt.org for its creation of the COVID-19 Connect chat bot introduced in 2020.
As part of the Chat for Impact initiative, the trio of firms launched an accelerator programme. A panel of five judges selected 10 organisations which will join the Impact Accelerator. Those judges are:
- Gulalai Ismail – Human rights activist Gulalai Ismail is the founder and chairperson of Aware Girls, a young women-led organisation working towards gender equality and peace which she established at the age of 16.
- Nmachi Jidenma – Nmachi Jidenma is head of Scouts & Partnerships at Sequoia Capital, one of the world’s top venture capital firms, and previously led global strategy and business development at WhatsApp Inc where she also led partnerships with governments and nonprofits.
- Matthaus Krzykowski – Matthaus Krzykowski is a founding member of 2hearts, a business community of professionals with immigration backgrounds that aims to build tomorrow’s tech society with cultural diversity.
- Rodrigo de Reyes – Rodrigo de Reyes is country director of Fundación Capital in Mozambique and coordinates business development in the Advanced Digital Services Unit of the non-profit social enterprise at a global level.
- Bosun Tijani – Bosun Tijani is the co-founder and chief executive of Co-Creation Hub (CcHUB) – a pan-Africa innovation enabler that works at the forefront of accelerating the application of innovation and social capital for a better society.
The winners as selected by the judges will join a four-month accelerator that will provide dedicated mentorship and support to help build their WhatsApp messaging service. This includes the opportunity for mentorship directly from WhatsApp.
This includes up to $50 000 to build and launch the service.
And the winners are:
- Digify Africa
- Mobile Pathways,
- Voices of Venezuela
“WhatsApp is proud to support these 10 organizations and accelerate the incredible work they are already doing every day on social justice issues,” says head of civic engagement at WhatsApp, Ben Supple.