Onandete, Namgo win big bucks at hackathon

21 April 2020 | Technology

In total, 108 teams joined the #NamibiaHacksCovid19 hackathon to fight the pandemic in Namibia, with more than 400 participants working on solutions and submitting 52 prototypes for assessment to the judges.
StartUp Namibia hosted the 54-hour event that took place exclusively only last weekend, with diverse teams focusing on finding solutions that can act as a catalyst to support the health system and businesses.

Category winners: Health
• First prize went to the Covid-19 self-reporting online consulting portal created by the Onandete team, who went home with N$50 000. The team conceived a platform to speed up efforts to detect possible cases, giving authorities a clearer picture of possible cases by increasing the sample size of the population that is tested.
• The second prize – N$25 000 – went to AwehDoctors from the Team Mad Engineers, who offer a way for doctors to treat patients telephonically for minor issues. This reduces the number of patients at public hospitals and clinics, thus decreasing the risk of infection.
• The third prize of N$15 000 was won by Ergo Analytics, offering a solution to improve contact tracing through technology, thereby reducing the risk of new waves of Covid-19 infections when the lockdown is lifted.

Category winners: Business continuity
• First prize of N$50 000 went to Namgo (Gerhard Kotze), who developed a solution to improve goods deliveries in a time of Covid-19.
• The N$25 000 second prize was awarded to Life Changers, who developed a messenger mobile application called Run Me an Errand. Using a SMS line, it connects businesses with buyers.
• The third prize of N$15 000 went to HoverMarket, an e-commerce mall connecting informal vendors as well as taxi drivers to customers.
The winning teams will be given tools to develop their concepts and mentoring by companies like Green Enterprise Solutions and Dololo Namibia.

The judging panel consisted of Kehad Snydewel (Green Enterprise Solutions), Kirstin Wiedow (Greentec Capital), Daisry Mathias (Office of the President) and Anna Vambe (GIZ, representing StartUp Namibia) who had the unenviable task of deciding which ideas and concepts had the greatest chance of being impactful and deliverable within a relatively short timeframe, whilst taking into account social impact, degree of innovation, feasibility and scalability, how close the solution is to making it to the market, and its ease of use.
“The best and the brightest of Namibia have amply demonstrated that they have the talent and drive to create implementable solutions and that pleases us as Green,” says Kehad Snydewel as one of the judges.
According to judge Daisry Mathias, she had no idea what to expect. “However, the level of ingenuity and commitment by the teams amazed me and made me proud of my fellow Namibians.”
The #NamibiaHacksCovid19 teams were represented by stakeholders from the tech sector, interdisciplinary teams, developer communities, university students, health professionals and businesses. Due to the nationwide lockdown and the measures in place, the event took place exclusively online.
The event was created through a partnership by GIZ with Namibia’s ministry of industrialization and trade as well as the ministry of health, with support of Green Enterprise Solutions, Dololo Namibia and NUST.

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