Aloysius Attah, Onitsha
Five students of Regina Pacis College, Onitsha, Anambra State, have emerged finalists for the Technovation World Challenge coming up in August 2018 in San Fransisco, United States.
The girls, code=named Team Save A Soul, comprising five brilliant girls: Promise Nnalue, Jessica Osita, Nwabuaku Ossai, Adaeze Onuigbo and Vivian Okoye, developed a mobile application called ‘FD-Detector’ to tackle the problem of fake pharmaceutical products in Nigeria with Mrs. Uchenna Onwuamaegbu-Ugwu, as their mentor. They will be pitching their app to great investors in Silicon Valley, California.
After emerging finalists during the Africa regional competition in Abuja, TEAM Save A Soul, is set to compete with USA, Span, Turkey, Uzbekistan and China in the 2018 Technovation World Pitch Junior Division on August 8, in San Francisco.
According to their mentor, Mrs. Onwuamaegbu-Ugwu, Director, Edufun Technik STEM Center, Onitsha, and a Mandela Washington Fellow, “This is the first time a Junior Nigerian team emerged among the finalists to visit Silicon Valley.
Technovation is a programme of Iridescent, a 501c3 non-profit based in USA that offers girls around the world the opportunity to learn the programming skills they need to emerge as tech entrepreneurs and leaders. Every year girls are invited to identify a problem in their communities, and then challenge them to solve them by developing android apps.
115 countries participated in the competition with over 2,000 mobile apps submitted.
Only 12 teams from all over the world were selected as finalists who will be given the opportunity to explain their projects in form of a pitch and tell their app story in a creative way on 8th August in USA.
The girls will also be attending Field trips, life-changing workshops including a networking session during their one week stay in USA.
Mrs. Onwuamaegbu- Uche noted that it was in January, this year, that she set out to teach some girls in Onitsha the skills they need to change the world with technology, and this according to her birthed the idea to solve a very challenging problem in Nigeria which is fake drugs.
She noted that the FD-Detector (Fake Drug Detector) helps identify fake pharmaceutical drugs in Nigeria while the app leverages a drug’s barcode to verify its authenticity and expiry date.
Team Save A Soul, she said, would also partner with the National Agency for Food & Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) an agency responsible for regulating drugs in Nigeria.
Over 19,000 girls around the world registered to participate in Technovation 2018, building apps and starting businesses that solve problems in their communities
Since 2010, more than 10,000 girls from 78 countries have participated in Technovation. With the help of volunteer mentors, they’ve produced mobile “startups” that have helped address problems in local and global communities the world over.
And while each year more and more girls take up the challenge, we know that there are always more problems to solve and that there are girls from every part of the world ready to solve them.
Two of the girls, Jessica Osita and Nnalue Promise who spoke to Daily Sun said they could not wait to go and conquer the world for Nigeria in the competition.
They noted that the regional competition was a great eye opener for them while the sky would only be their starting point even as they showered praises on the mentor and other facilitators who helped them during the training period.