Nailab in partnership with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) through the I Accelerator program, have over the last four months seen four startups build and refine solutions that will aid young people in accessing credible age appropriate information on sexual reproductive health.
The four innovations, Imara TV, Sophie Bot, Jump Arena and Deaf Elimu, have through the acceleration program validated and developed their solutions. Through training, mentorship and focus group discussions with the youth, they have learnt how to manoeuvre the business world and make their solutions relevant in addressing the issues facing young people. More specifically, they have gained insights into the health sector through renowned mentors in the industry.
It is estimated that young people under the age of 30 years make up 75% of the Kenyan population. Many of these young people do not have access to accurate information on their sexual and reproductive health, making them vulnerable to sexual abuse/violence, unintended pregnancies, sexually transmitted infections including HIV, and other health challenges.
The four solutions were designed to reverse this trend with a focus on content generation and dissemination, game learning, and peer to peer learning. The solutions, in the four month pilot period, have been accessed by 73,895 young people between the ages of 15 and 21 years. These numbers signify the great potential that lies with these innovations that are driven by young people for young people.
“The value of such solutions is that we will see direct impact on behaviour change of our young people through the creation of self-based controls and understanding of their sexuality and sexual rights”, said Sam Gichuru, Nailab founder. Mr. Gichuru went on to say that, such innovations will help us transcend boundaries and generations.
“It is our fervent hope that the young people of this nation will immensely benefit from these platforms translating to healthy lives and fulfilment of potential”, said UNFPA Deputy Representative to Kenya and Officer in Charge, Ms. Gift Malunga”
The acceleration program which is anchored within the I.AM campaign has so far reached 687,518 young people through various online engagement initiatives. The campaign has also seen active participation and support from the Government of Kenya through the National Council for Population and Development (NCPD) and the Ministry of Health in designing and alignment with the Government priorities articulated in the Vision 2030 social pillar focusing on health with the endeavour to enhance the reproductive health status of all Kenyans.