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Ciku Kimeria
Writer, Adventurer, Development Consultant, Travelblogger
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piqer: Ciku Kimeria
Wednesday, 08 August 2018

How Tech Is Putting The Needs Of Impoverished Kenyans On The Map

Nairobi is a technological hub — not just an African technological hub, but one that has won its place on the global map. The world's leading mobile money service, Mpesa, was created in Kenya.

Ushahidi, the platform that was created by four Kenyan bloggers and software developers (two of them female), started off as a crowd-sourcing platform that was used in 2007/2008 to provide real-time data on areas that were affected by post-election violence. Ushahidi went on to save lives after the Haiti 2010 earthquake.

AkiraChix, an organization that was launched by four Kenyan female tech experts, one of whom was actually a classmate of mine in high school, has gone on to empower disadvantaged women by teaching them skills to get into tech careers.

Nairobi is a tech hub that is creating solutions that are both relevant for the developing country context, but sophisticated enough to be sparking innovations in developed markets. 

This short seven-minute video by PBS captures the energy, enthusiasm and drive that is the Kenyan tech scene. 

Mapping is one of several tech initiatives to bring attention to people in Nairobi’s vast impoverished neighborhoods, people like Farida Atei, a second-generation Kibera resident. Orphaned at 13, she shares this tiny space with an aunt and sister. She’s 26 now, a single mother who is determined that life will be far better for her 4-year-old daughter, Amina. So, after breakfast, she loads up her backpack and heads to class, a few miles and half a world from Kibera, in one of Nairobi’s thriving tech hubs. She attends AkiraChix, a rigorous, post-high school program that trains young women from poor neighborhoods to be high-tech entrepreneurs.

I particularly enjoyed the video as it is highlighting the wealth of tech activities that have been started by Kenyans for Kenyans and the world. It's a great contrast to the images we usually see of Africa being 'saved' by the West. 

How Tech Is Putting The Needs Of Impoverished Kenyans On The Map
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