2022 YOTA Youth Innovation Challenge for Young Africans – The YOTA (Youth Opportunity & Transformation in Africa) challenge is currently accepting applications from African talented young innovators.
The goal of the Challenge is to promote and nurture catalytic youth-led solutions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Challenge is part of the Africa Youth Partnership to Advocate for an Equitable Recovery from the COVID-19 Pandemic’s activities.
Through grassroots inventions and social action, YOTA (Youth Opportunity and Transformation in Africa) empowers young innovators to drive change and contribute to post-pandemic recovery efforts. This aims to mitigate the negative effects of the pandemic on young people and their communities while also elevating the ideas, resourcefulness, and creativity of young innovators striving to address the global health issue.
They are searching for the most outstanding young innovators from Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, and Nigeria to present their ideas and proposed solutions for solving the many issues that the COVID-19 pandemic has posed to the continent. They wish to encourage youth creativity in order to improve inclusive and equitable post-pandemic recovery initiatives.
YOTA Youth Innovation Challenge Sectors
The Youth Innovation Challenge’s thematic focus spans numerous industries, as long as a direct link to post-pandemic recovery potential can be established. We are particularly interested in youth-led solutions that address issues in one or more of the following themes:
- Agriculture and Fisheries
- Digitalisation, AI, and Emerging Technologies
- Education and Skills
- Energy and Industry
- Finance, Trade, and International Investment
- Governance and Politics
- Health and Wellbeing, including Vaccines
- Housing and Infrastructure Development
- Local and Regional Development
- Mobility and Transport
YOTA Youth Innovation Challenge Eligibility
- An individual young person between the age of 18 and 35; or an informal group of young people, or a local youth- or women-led organization or company (both non-profit or for-profit are welcome); female candidates or teams with predominantly female members are particularly encouraged to apply.
- Nationals of Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, and Nigeria who are resident in their countries or based in the diaspora.
- Persons who are passionate about using their skills to design innovative solutions to promote addressing the many socio-economic challenges posed to your country by the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Truly innovative and impactful ideas or solutions that have the potential to change lives in a sustainable way.
YOTA Youth Innovation Challenge Awards
Participants in the Youth Innovation Challenge have the opportunity to receive a variety of resources to help them put their ideas into action, including:
- Up to $5,000 USD of funding per project.
- Business development advice from top experts in the field of innovation and human-centered design.
- Access to carefully curated tools and resources to support the full cycle of youth-led innovation and human-centered design.
- Opportunity to become part of a growing community of young African innovators for ongoing learning, sharing, and networking.
- Opportunity to be supported to showcase solutions across various international multi-stakeholder platforms, processes, and convenings before the end of 2022.
YOTA Youth Innovation Challenge Judging Criteria
- Fit to scope– Solution contributes to COVID-19 recovery efforts with a potential to disrupt
- Business model – Solution clearly demonstrates a viable business model and scope for revenue generation
- Sustainability – Solution is financially and operationally viable beyond the initial investment
- Feasibility – Solution is viable and in the right direction
- Value – Solution has a strong value proposition
- Creativity – Solution is clearly an innovative approach to addressing the target challenge
- Human centered – Solution is based on feedback from end users in order to solve a real problem for the community
- Scalability – Solution can be easily scaled up and replicated beyond the initial scope
How to Apply for YOTA Youth Innovation Challenge
The First Round submissions deadline is July 29, 2022. Announcement of shortlisted submissions will be made on August 12, 2022.