HelpMum, a social health-tech startup has been awarded a $250,000 grant by the United States’ Patrick J. McGovern Foundation. The grant aims to support the deployment of an AI-Driven Vaccine Intervention Optimiser – ADVISER, in Nigeria.
The company said the $250,000 grant will enable it to deploy the AI solution to achieve and ensure optimal vaccination of infants across Nigeria and also scale up its goal of improving maternal and infant health across Africa. The grant also makes HelpMum the first Nigerian startup to receive grant funding and partnership with the Mcgovern Foundation, which has awarded $330 million in grants since its inception.
ADVISER is an AI framework designed to optimize intervention allocation to improve Nigeria’s immunization rates. The vaccination intervention optimizer is based on an integer linear program that seeks to maximize the cumulative probability of successful vaccination.
What they are saying
Speaking on the grant, the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of HelpMum, Dr. Abiodun Adereni said: “With this funding, we will be able to deploy ADVISER, which will be the first AI-driven vaccination uptake program in Nigeria. Our optimization formulation is intractable in practice and we present a heuristic approach that enables us to solve the problem for real-world use cases. We also present theoretical bounds for the heuristic method.”
He added that the AI solution has the capacity to tell which mothers would default on immunizing their kids as it will use the data and information provided by these mothers in the registration process to optimize their default tendencies.
What you should know
- HelpMum was selected as the winner of the Waislitz Global Citizen COVID – 19 Response award and went on to receive 50,000 dollars as part of winning the award. Also, the startup was one of the winners of the Google impact challenge in 2018 which saw the enterprise get a 250,000 dollars prize.
- The Patrick J. McGovern Foundation is global 21st-century philanthropy bridging the frontiers of artificial intelligence, data science, and social impact to create a thriving, equitable, and sustainable future for all. The Foundation’s work focuses on bringing together academia, practitioners, and civil society to pursue the potential of AI and data science to address some of the world’s most urgent challenges.
The Reason Nigeria’s Central Bank is debiting Banks
“For failing to satisfy the required minimum cash reserve ratio, 15 banks have been debited 838.32 billion by Nigeria’s central bank.”
For failing to satisfy the required minimum cash reserve ratio, 15 banks have been debited 838.32 billion by Nigeria’s central bank.
First Bank, Zenith Bank, Access Bank, Union Bank, United Bank for Africa, Polaris Bank, and Keystone Bank are a few of the banks that are impacted.
In an effort to stop inflation and currency devaluation in the nation, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) declared in September that the CRR will be raised to 32.5%.
As a result of 15 banks failing to satisfy the required minimum cash reserve ratio (CRR) standard, the Central Bank of Nigeria has debited them 838.32 billion.
Zenith Bank (270 billion dollars), Access Bank (205 billion), United Bank for Africa (134 billion dollars), FCMB (90 billion dollars), First Bank (33 billion dollars), Union Bank (29 billion dollars), Keystone Bank (14 billion dollars), Titan Bank (11.6 billion dollars), Polaris Bank (10 billion dollars), Nova (5.5 billion dollars), Unity Bank (one billion dollars), Heritage Bank (470 million dollars), FBN Microfinance Bank (460 million dollars), and Suntrust Bank (92 million dollars) are among the affected banks.
The amount of customer deposits that must be held with the Central Bank is known as the CRR. Commercial banks are required to deposit 325 for every 1,000 that their customers deposit at the present rate of 32.5%.
Godwin Emefiele, the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), said at a meeting of the monetary policy committee in September 2022 that the bank was increasing its CRR from 27.5% to 32.5% as part of its efforts to control rising inflation in the nation.
The benchmark interest rate was also hiked by the CBN to 15.5% in addition to the CRR.
He said that failing banks would be prohibited from using the foreign currency market until they comply with the new rule. The CBN Governor added that one of the causes of the rising inflation rate and currency depreciation was the economy’s increased liquidity.
An effective way to control the flow of money through an economy is to raise the CRR. It has an impact on banks’ access to capital as well as their capacity to extend loans. Additionally, banks’ interest rates can rise as a result of this.
It also guarantees that banks will have a sizeable reserve to fall back on if clients demand their money.
Africa’s GDP at 35% risk to Climate Change
“The president and chief executive officer (CEO) of the Africa Finance Corporation (AFC) stated during a panel discussion at the Reuters Impact climate conference on October 3rd in London that the continent’s gross domestic product (GDP) is at danger by up to 35% due to climate concerns.”
The president and chief executive officer (CEO) of the Africa Finance Corporation (AFC) stated during a panel discussion at the Reuters Impact climate conference on October 3rd in London that the continent’s gross domestic product (GDP) is at danger by up to 35% due to climate concerns.
He asserts that the number will continue to rise as long as Africa lacks climate change-resistant infrastructure.
The AFC, according to Zubairu, thinks that Africa has a chance to seize the moment and develop ecosystems of adaptation because of the difficulties associated with the energy transition, the energy crisis, and the food crisis that Africa and the rest of the world are experiencing.
Africa must create ecosystems that enable reforestation so that trees may absorb carbon and provide women with access to cleaner cooking options because the use of firewood as a cooking fuel depletes the forests, which serve as carbon sinks. Only 1% of the world’s finest solar resources are used, even though 60% of them are in Africa. The underdeveloped hydropower and natural gas resources of Africa could be a major factor in the current global difficulties, according to Zubairu’s statement.
To achieve a just energy transition, Zubairu stressed to the guests of the Reuters Impact conference the importance of dependable access that is affordable for the great majority of people.
In addition, he pointed out that up to 900 million Africans lack access to clean cooking, making up 80% of the world’s population without access to power.
“Just transition for us is access to energy that is affordable, energy access that does not compromise economic development in Africa, and energy access that allows for the key challenges around financing, and adaptation to be resolved at the same time as economic development.
“When we look at projects and opportunities, we are trying to see how we can build an ecosystem along value chains that allow for carbon neutrality as we go along but the focus is on economic development,” Zubairu says.
Numerous parties have urged to cast doubt on the philosophy underlying the Global North’s advice to Africa not to exploit its natural gas resources. Zubairu contends that asking individuals to stop using gas while imports of fuel oil or the use of coal are options is inappropriate. He claims that the AFC built Cape Verde’s first wind farm, which provides 20% of the island’s energy needs.
The company is also constructing the first independent power project (IPP) in Djibouti to replace fuel imported from Ethiopia, a gas-fired plant in Ghana to replace fuel imported in the form of fuel oil and diesel, as well as a gas plant in Senegal to use Senegalese natural gas. He claims that each of these initiatives lowers carbon emissions.
Zubairu urges Africans to be practical in his appeal for a consensus between the continent’s political and commercial elites to address the continent’s current energy poverty concerns.
He claimed that focusing on emissions reductions, to which Africans contribute the least, is not the most sensible course of action. Instead, emphasis should be placed on increasing capacity for solar energy, using electric vehicles, and altering how resources are extracted from the continent.
He claims that after mining, the minerals are sold to Asia, where they are processed before being exported to other regions of the world. He claimed that this could not go on and that Africa needed to process its mineral resources as well so that value could be captured before exports and that it could increase its mining capability.
Africa has to increase its mining capability, more minerals should be found, mined, and processed on the continent, according to Zubairu. Infrastructure capacity will rise with increased investments in adaptation.
Sudanese philanthropist Mo Ibrahim spoke forcefully for energy justice during the same panel discussion. He explained to the audience that a country’s carbon emissions increase with its level of development.
“You cannot discuss environmental justice without addressing energy justice,” he asserts.
Despite being the lowest contributors to CO2 emissions, Africans are the ones most impacted by climate change. Desertification causes disputes between farmers and herders throughout Africa; these conflicts are distinguished by violence in Sudan and Nigeria due to environmental implications.
Africans are suffering as a result of external causes which Zubairu says he finds absurd that some people traveled to Glasgow last year and made the decision to stop funding worldwide fossil fuel projects. 600 million people in Africa lack access to electricity.
On the continent, there would be no jobs, no healthcare, and no education. Without regard for what the global South needs, the global North constantly discusses and makes decisions.
We are not allowed to use our gas, even though Europe receives half of the natural gas produced in Africa. This type of injustice must end; without Africans’ participation at the table, no one should discuss justice, he alleges.
Heineken Invites Graduates for Finance Mgt Program in Cairo
“Graduates are invited to apply for Heineken’s Finance Management Trainee Program in Cairo.”
Graduates are invited to apply for Heineken’s Finance Management Trainee Program in Cairo.
The Heineken Finance Management Trainee Program is now taking applications, and young graduates who are eager and ambitious are encouraged to apply. Graduates will have a variety of professional opportunities as a result.
The program is designed to provide you early responsibility and enable you to get started right away. Additionally, a portion of your time will be dedicated to job-specific training to ensure that you have the skills you need as an employee for our organization.
Graduates of the trainee program will have the opportunity to receive regular feedback as well as training from knowledgeable coaches.
The program going by its details takes place in Cairo, Egypt; the North section of Africa and its basically centered on those in the Finance field with a Bachelor’s degree qualification. The program is intended to run for 2 years with the application date closing 30th November 2022.
The Heineken scheme covers people of different nationalities.
Rotations among the Finance department’s duties are part of the Management Trainee Program. To guarantee that the joiners have access to a variety of learning and development opportunities, you will be given a specific assignment for each role.
To apply, click here
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