15 June 2020

UNICEF Funding Opportunity for Blockchain Startups

Deadline: July 26, 2020 **Female-founded start-ups are  encouraged to apply  The UNICEF Innovation Fund is looking to make up to $100K equity-free investments (in USD and/or cryptocurrency) to provide early stage (seed) financing and mentoring to for-profit technology startups that have the potential to benefit humanity.  Applicants have the…, Apply Now, Who we're looking for, We are currently looking to invest in companies developing blockchain-based software solutions. Examples of areas of interest include, but are not limited to: Finance Financing enables individual people to participate in and contribute to various ecosystems. We are seeking solutions that : Enable people to use, earn, and hold cryptocurrencies…, What does the UNICEF Innovation Fund provide?  , Seed funding The Fund provides up to $100,000 in equity-free seed funding, in USD. The investment is intended for prototype testing and validation, and to get it to a stage where the company has proof that the solution works. Crypto funding Selected startups also have the opportunity to receive part of their funding in cryptocurrency. The UNICEF…, How to apply:, Step 1) Check the general eligibility criteria: You must be registered as a private company in a UNICEF programme country; You are working on open source technology solutions or willing to be open-source under the following licenses or their equivalent: BSD, GNU, MIT (software), CERN, MIT, TAPR (hardware), or CC-BY (content); You have an existing…, What happens after your submission?, The submissions deadline is on 11:59 PM ET July 26th, 2020. Only shortlisted companies will be contacted and then requested to submit a more in-depth proposal.   Two young girls working on a laptop *Female-founded start-ups are  encouraged to apply .
23 April 2020


The COVID-19 outbreak has created a climate that poses a colossal threat, now and in the future, to children and their families —a grim reality especially compounded among children already affected by poverty, disability, or social exclusion. The global school shutdowns and health crisis have exacerbated already challenging realities for lower-…, Giga Initiatives supporting communities during COVID-19:, Critical Software and Content: We’re identifying, strengthening, and scaling proven and new innovations in software, learning systems, and content that support telework, tele-education, tele-health, and financial services –all of which can be deployed at low-cost, scale, and customized to local languages.   Broadband Connectivity: We’re developing…, Examples of Giga's Impact, Giga has helped the Government of Kyrgyzstan generate $200k savings per year (40% of its education connectivity budget). By seeing all the schools and their corresponding connectivity on a map, the Government was able to renegotiate contracts and subsequently reduce prices by almost half (from $50/month to $28.5/month) and to almost double speeds…, Global Updates, Girl looking at an ipad UNICEF/UN0299581/Herwig Giga is anchored and recommended in the Secretary-General's High-Level Panel on Digital Cooperation: Recommendation 1B which calls for the UN to create and provide access to vital “Digital Public Goods,” and Recommendation 1A which calls for universal access to connectivity. IHS Towers joins Giga. …, What's next, Moving full-speed to connect every school, raising public and private funding to connect every school by putting forward several countries as “accelerated” actors in Giga.  Sharing key open-source remote education tools, as well as innovations in software, learning systems, and content that support tele-work, tele-education, tele-health, and…
09 April 2020

U-Report – COVID-19 outbreak response

In February 2020 the U-Report for Humanitarian Action initiative, a joint effort of Office of Innovation , Programme division , Communication for development and Office of Emergency programmes developed a U-Report Information chatbot to support COVID-19 Risk Communication and Community Engagement (RCCE). As of 20 th  June 2020, U-Report’s Covid-19…, Young people and communities can access:  , Safe, speedy and accurate information on the Coronavirus direct to your phone on five messaging channels: SMS, Facebook, Viber, WhatsApp and Telegram. Life-saving information on Corona Virus available in multiple languages, English, Spanish, French, Bahasa, Arabic, Vietnamese, Thai, etc. Translation to new languages can be easily done during…, The COVID-19 Information Chatbot Interface,  Below are screenshots from people using CoronaVirus chatbot. Version 3 of the chatbot has been developed where the content and navigation have been revised based on current UNICEF and WHO guidelines. The new version also makes it easier for country teams to localize the content and introduces misinformation and rumour tracking functionality.…, Try the COVID-19 Information Chatbot yourself using U-Report Global! , Using WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger you can access the current version of the COVID-19 Information Chatbot, WhatsApp: Send “CoronaVirus” to +66 80 024 9442.   Facebook Messenger: Send ‘CoronaVirus’ using Facebook Messenger at  http://m.me/UReportGlobal Viber: Follow ‘U-Report’ Public Account on Viber (Go to Discover), Send the message ‘…
13 November 2019

Listening First: How U-Report Redesigns with a Human-Centred Focus

Product design at UNICEF merges the best of human-centred principles with the sprint-based practices of technology development, all fully grounded in a listen-first approach.  U-Report is a global platform built to listen to the voices of young people by connecting simple technologies like social media, websites, and mobile phones to create a…, Where We Started , Our first listening mission was to Cote d’Ivoire (now home to over 1 million U-Reporters!), where workshops and interviews kicked off the project. Along with teams from Haiti, Congo Brazzaville and Ghana, our time in this early phase focused on hearing from U-Reporters and organizational partners to ground ourselves in where the problems were, but…, Insight > Prototype > Iterate > Repeat, Prototyping starts from a humble place -- the first version is almost always merely a collection of our best guesses, all sparked by early insights and hunches.  But even this first version is crucial because it becomes an important artifact that everyone, from our steering committee to future prototype testers, can have something to give the…, Next Steps, After a few rounds of prototyping and testing, we were at a critical juncture where we had three things in front of us: a collection of insights, a stack of still unanswered questions, and a need to start development. By now, we knew our audience, we knew to focus on results and response, and we knew the vital need for cleanup. What we didn’t yet…, The Final Product, Now that we have finalized design concepts, we can fast-forward through four months of sprint cycles, bug fixing and product development. This long process of listening to our global community led the way toward the work that so many people helped us create. In spending the needed time to invest in listening, and by only designing what we heard,…