Originally posted May 12th 2016 on AllAfrica.
GE and Santa Clara University's Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship have announced a partnership that focuses on training and mentoring social entrepreneurs working on maternal and child health innovations in sub-Saharan Africa. The program enables more women to experience better health by improving the quality, accessibility, and affordability of care.
The healthymagination Mother & Child program aims to help social enterprises addressing maternal and/or child health strengthen their business models, refine business plans, reinforce organizational development, manage talent, and learn how to scale sustainably. Enterprises that provide infrastructure services or facilities associated with needs from pregnancy to pediatric care are also eligible to apply.
The program is being offered to 15-to-20 selected participants. Selected social entrepreneurs from Nigeria Ghana, Kenya, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, South Africa and Angola will be taken through a detailed training programme. Other countries where the social entrepreneurs who apply will be screened include Tanzania, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Rwanda and Senegal. Participants will learn business fundamentals and how to improve strategic thinking. If selected they are expected to articulate a business plan that demonstrates impact, growth, and long-term financial sustainability.
The programme includes 6-month's of online training during which participants will be matched with a Silicon Valley leader who will guide them on how to develop a scalable enterprise. The programme begins in July with an in-person event in Nairobi; and ends with an investor showcase in February 2017, also in Nairobi. To be considered for the program, qualified leaders of social enterprises need to apply by May 18, 2016. Selected finalists will be announced after a formal review and interview process by a panel of judges from GE and Miller Center. "This program supports GE's long track record in developing innovations for emerging markets while increasing positive health outcomes," said Sue Siegel, CEO, GE Ventures and healthymagination.
"We are excited to join Miller Center to accelerate the growth of social enterprises and commercialize innovative ideas while serving as a resource for entrepreneurs working to improve access, affordability and quality of maternal and child health in sub-Saharan Africa." "We share GE's healthymagination vision for innovating new ways to address global health challenges," said Dr Thane Kreiner, Executive Director, Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship. "The partnership between GE and Miller Center highlights the potential for social entrepreneurship to improve maternal and child health in a region of the world that has limited access to skilled health care providers."