Africa: CCHub, Africa CDC and GIZ Support 8 African Companies Using Smart Ways to Counter Misinformation On COVID-19

press release

In our effort to flatten the curve, we [CCHub] launched a call for COVID-19 projects on March 15, to support the work of entrepreneurs across the continent solving problems associated with the pandemic.

Since the launch, CcHUB has provided funding (approx. $11,000) and design support to five startups working on solutions across our four key areas of focus. These include a triage tool and telemedicine app by Wellvis, bulk food items delivery app by Pricepally, vetted animated COVID-19 information by Capital Power Multimedia, the production of 1000 protective face shields by S-band as well as the production of 1000 clinical masks by The Assembly Hub.

On Friday, March 27, the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) partnered with Co-Creation Hub (CcHUB) - Africa's leading technology innovation centre to provide funding support to innovative communication-related COVID-19 related projects that are focused on the delivery of vetted information in various African languages.

These projects are important to educate and sensitize the continent's most vulnerable populations, and they will also play a part to curb the spread of misinformation about the virus. Projects by eight African companies have been selected so far, and they will be supported with grants of up to $5,000 to propagate the reach of their projects.

These projects are:

Big Cabal Media ( Zikoko) || Nigeria

Big Cabal Media has built a microsite that provides verified information about coronavirus. This microsite contains information about the virus as well as explainers in graphic and video formats translated into multiple Nigerian languages. These videos can be downloaded and shared on social platforms like WhatsApp to provide information about the virus to a wider audience. All material will be pushed to social platforms and WhatsApp.

Flare || Kenya

Flare operates the largest network of ambulances throughout Kenya. Using an app like Uber, they have been able to aggregate hundreds of ambulances on their platform. In addition to a number of critical solutions by the Flare team to help tackle the coronavirus, Flare wants to educate and conduct routine training for all ambulance teams in their network to help the government agencies manage patients with COVID-19, including the proper use of personal protective equipment (PPE).

This includes 600+ respondents and 80 ambulances in Nairobi with a broader network of 500 ambulances throughout the country. Additionally, they are securing global support to provide all ambulances with ample equipment to keep their teams safe.

Capital Power multimedia || Nigeria

Capital power multimedia is creating animated videos localizing COVID-19 related information from the World Health Organization into indigenous Nigerian languages. They have produced a few of these short videos in Igbo, Hausa and Yoruba.

BRCK || Kenya, Rwanda

BRCK is a free public WIFI provider in Kenya that allows anyone within range of their signal to connect to the internet for free. BRCK has established and successfully scaled a public WIFI infrastructure model in both fixed and mobile locations across Kenya and Rwanda (1500 and 1200 sites respectively). They currently have 2 million users, the majority of whom are at the bottom of the pyramid. Since the pandemic started, they have used their hotspots to transmit relevant coronavirus information to their users.

Nifty Works Plus || Kenya

Nifty works+ is a graphic and audio-visual brand design firm that has worked with partners across Kenya to tell their stories through various audio-visual mediums. The team will be producing short animated series in English and Swahili with key characters highlighting the need to maintain social distancing, wash hands and stay at home and/or get home before curfew (for Kenya). The videos can be shared on social media and WhatsApp.

Guereza Animation || Western Africa

Guereza Animation is a digital animation company telling African stories and folklore using cartoons by empowering and investing in the new generation of content creators. The team has created a comic story series that communicates the key information about COVID-19 and how everyone including children can play a role in flattening the curve.

Chekkit || Nigeria

A public engagement platform which allows decision-makers to connect directly with the public using USSD (Chekkit's Consumer Intelligence Solution). Anyone in the public dials a USSD shortcode and are provided with options to:

Creative Nestlings || South Africa

The Creative Nestlings team are working on a series of mini-comics illustrated by Mogau Kekana and written by Noma Amadi in different local South African languages. The mini-comics will be shared on digital platforms like WhatsApp and Facebook where information is instantly viral. Most of the information in South Africa is mainly in English and the team believes it's time information is localised.

We are dedicated to keeping our Call for projects open and continue to provide support to COVID-19 related projects. It is also an honour to have the Africa CDC and the Lagos state Science Research and Innovation Council (LASRIC) onboard as partners that have committed to providing additional support to shortlisted projects.

If you would like to submit a project, send in your submission here - bit.ly/solve-for-covid19

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