by Stella Odiwuor.
Following a rigorous season of participant application review and selection, we were able to identify 36 individuals from all over the world who were the embodiment of IDDS values to make a difference with and for the community. These applicants demonstrated drive, leadership, a sense of community, an interest in applying user-centered-design and were concerned about what new things they could add into their toolbox after attending an intense two-week summit that delves into Financial Inclusion. We would like to share a couple of those compelling stories in this blog.
Meet Anubhav Arora (30), a Chemical Engineering degree holder. He is currently a graduate student at MIT awaiting to receive his Master’s in Integrated Design and Management (IDM).
After a successful initiation of Noora Health, a social enterprise in India, he and his team were able to emerge the second most innovative organization in the country in 2016 - just 3 years after its founding. Anubhav shares his endurance and zeal to contribute to the nation’s development and recalls teaching himself how to ride a motorcycle in order to be able to access parts of Jaunpur, rural India. During these visits, he was devastated by the state of healthcare and decided to invest in ways that would help in mitigating the entangled corrupt systems found in the health sector. Otherwise, more people who would have been able to receive medical attention would continue to lose their lives and the number of babies born in forsaken conditions would take a rise.
Among his most valued passions, Anubhav is committed to empowering the masses to work together in order to come up with solutions to endearing problems. He believes in the power of human-centered design to provide longer lasting, easy-access and effective solutions to challenges. He is strongly inclined towards working with like minded people during the IDDS Kenya this year, and will be one of the beneficiaries of financial aid looking to engage in experiential learning during the summit.
From the land of Baganda (Uganda) emerges a passionate Architect and Designer, Frank Morris Matovu (40), who strives to make a change in and for his community.
Frank believes in the design process and prioritizes the step-by-step identification of problems that culminates in a broken-down approach to determine possible solutions. Throughout his school and work experience, he has been able to work with diverse teams that shared similar interests within and beyond his country. One of the most lingering big questions in his work is ‘How do we empower the people to understand the design process and put it into practice to create a more sustainable society?’
In 2007, Frank mobilized his classmates to reclaim the severely abandoned Independent Monument of Kampala. The local authorities charged with the responsibility of maintaining it had neglected their role, but he understood that something ought to be done. To-date, the monument and its surrounding remain clean and inviting while residents and Kampala tourists visit the monument to take souvenir pictures. More recently, he was able to attend the MIT D-LAB CCB (Creative Capacity Building) Training of Trainers where his team of four was tasked to solve the sanitation problem with a focus on unplugged latrines. They innovated new designs that would reduce the number of disease vectors that previously accessed human faecal material and spread diseases among residents by contaminating their food. Additionally, they would devise ways to reduce points of contact between the user and parts of the latrine.
The aforementioned experiences are among the many pathways that Frank has been able to leverage in order to positively contribute to his community. He aspires to empower people and co-create solutions with them for their overall better living standards. Frank will be joining IDDS Financial Inclusion this summer in Kenya to further his application of the design process and work with the locals to come up with solutions that best address their problems in financial access.
Help us get Anubhav, Frank and their fellow colleagues to optimise their experience in Kenya this summer and to continue creating positive change in the communities they live in!
IDDS Kenya 2018 will be held in Embu from July 8 to 23 with the aim to co create solutions to boost access to innovative financial products and services focused on rural populations. We encourage to follow our journey. We are also crowdfunding for selected participants with high potential that are unable to pay for their transportation and expenses during the summit. If you or anyone you know would like to contrtibute to the cause please click in in our StartSomeGood crowdfunding campaign https://startsomegood.com/projects/financialinclusionkenya.