On the 3rd of April 2023, 15 dynamic innovators from diverse backgrounds including farmers, fishermen, welders, and student from technical colleges, came together in Mwanza for a 30-day technology innovation camp – Jamii Tech. With the urgent need to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030, these young minds brainstormed practical solutions to some of Mwanza’s most pressing community challenges.
Jamii Tech Program, co-convened by JMKF, Twende Innovation Center, and SIDO-TLED HUB, provided a 4-week design program connecting intergenerational teams to conduct context-driven design with and for members of the Tanzanian community. The program adopted a Human-Centered Design (HCD) approach, specifically, in the design process, creative problem-solving, local productions, and cross-cultural collaboration.
The young innovators were introduced to the HCD approach and catered to the needs of the user by valuing the process of problem-solving through testing, prototyping, and acquiring feedback from the user in product development. The program also included Creative Capacity Building (CCB) workshops, co-creation between community members and students, technical support from mentors locally and intensive prototyping, testing, and product finalization.
As a result of Jamii Tech, three innovative solutions were created, including a box/packaging making machine (CREUP) providing a custom packaging alternative for SME’s, a wire fence-making machine providing access to security for the community, and a sardine drier machine (Sardy dryers) custom for sardine fishermen to sell and preserve their fish. All of these innovations were made to cater to the economic needs of different communities based on their daily challenges.
On the 29th of April 2023, the innovators showcased their innovations at their graduation ceremony at SIDO-TLED HUB. The ceremony was graced by Mr. Eliakim E. Mtawa, Assistant Director-Coordination (Economic Empowerment) Prime Minister’s Office, Policy, Parliament Affairs, Labor, Youth, Employment and Persons with Disability (PMO-LYED) and marked the successful accomplishment of the program.
The next steps for these young innovators include receiving seed grants to formalize their innovations into actual businesses. Partners will provide support in establishing business plans, linkage to markets through programs such as the Kijana Leo TV program and connecting the innovations to business networks relevant to their networks.
JMKF is committed to ensuring that young people practical and relevant solutions that will expand to practical businesses, create employment opportunities, and provide access to decent jobs through social innovation.
Get ready for the next phase of Jamii Tech – the future of innovation is in the hands of the youth!