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Keur Yaye wins the 2020 Innovating for Mothers Challenge in Senegal

Keur Yaye, an initiative by Mbathio Dieng of the AGORA association, has won the 2020 Innovating for Mothers Challenge and has been selected to receive twelve months of business incubation in addition to €20,000 in seed-funding to kick-start their social enterprise in the Reach for Change Senegal Incubator. ​

The project Keur Yaye uses new technologies to identify women with high-risk pregnancies and then assists them with dedicated transport and lodging in proximity to obstetric hospitals to ensure they get the care they need at the time of delivery. The initiative will be piloted over a 12-month period in 50 villages across the St. Louis region.

“Keur Yaye will receive technical support for the design and successful implementation of this project, and Reach for Change will provide business model support to strengthen the design of the Yaye Dem Dikk service through the Senegal Incubator Program. Over the course of twelve months, the program will provide the winner with intensive and expert individual and group training, organized visits to established businesses for market research and professional mentoring.” - Mayacine Diop, Country Manager Senegal

The two runner-ups for the Challenge who will receive a grant of €5000 and incubator support, are:

Njureel: Led by Awa Ndiaye, a telemedicine web/mobile application that helps pregnant women to consult a doctor without traveling (if not recommended by doctor). The app also allows pregnant women to receive confidential psychological assistance provided by social workers from wherever they are based.

Sunu Jigeen:​ Led by Ousmane Ly of Corpus Médical, a multi-pronged initiative comprising an educational app focused on maternal and child health, enriched flours to combat malnutrition, medical information and screening campaigns in rural areas, and a sponsorship program to enlarge access to health insurance.

The Innovating for Mothers Challenge was made possible by Mothers at Risk, a Brussels-based non-profit organization committed to helping save lives in pregnancy and childbirth and The Ella Fund, a philanthropy fund that seeks to empower girls and women through education, healthcare and entrepreneurship. 

“When we launched the Innovating for Mothers Challenge it was unclear how much interest it would generate, especially with the world focused on COVID-19. We have been impressed and heartened by the enthusiasm, creativity and commitment of all of the Senegalese entrepreneurs who responded to our challenge, and we are delighted to be able to back all three finalists with some level of financial and technical support.” - Erin Gainer,​ the Founder of the Ella Fund

“We have been very impressed by the entrepreneurial spirit and dynamism of the semi-finalists and of the three finalists of the Innovating for Mothers Challenge. It has been wonderful to connect with Senegal’s nascent ecosystem for innovation and social enterprise. We are excited to work with Mbathio Dieng and her team in their journey to pilot the Keur Yaye initiative, and in their goal to eventually scale their impact across Senegal. We were also impressed by the enthusiasm and potential of the 2 runner-ups, Njureel and Sunu Jigeen. We want to honor their initiative by awarding a smaller grant to each as well as technical support to help them make progress on their projects and help forge strategic partnerships.” - Diana Perez-Buck,​ the Founder of Mothers at Risk

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