With around 272 million migrants worldwide, migration remains one of the most complex global issues requiring our immediate (and continuous) action. Millions of people, forced to leave their home countries, are often faced with severe difficulties upon arrival at a new place. Poor or no access to quality education and healthcare, lack of food and housing, unemployment and documentation issues, to name just a few, are the common obstacles an individual might encounter in a foreign country. So, how can we guarantee the safety of these highly vulnerable groups while also ensuring that they have everything they need to start a new life?
The good news is that technology and entrepreneurship have already proven their worth in aiding migrants around the world through all the stages of the migration cycle. With the importance of utilizing technology, it is then necessary to provide those businesses with the right tools and opportunities for their growth. That’s why we have partnered with the Human Security Division of the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs to launch an open call for ventures working in the field of migration in MENA and Africa. The aim of the project was to support socially-driven business models in countries and regions prone to strong migration movements.
The eligible ventures had to show promising business opportunities at a local level and offer innovative solutions that reduce the vulnerability of migrants. Additionally, these ventures had to be at their seed-stage, meaning that they must have a Minimal Viable Product (MVP), initial user traction, and operate in either in English or French language. The countries we targeted were Cote d’Ivoir, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo, Ethiopia, Somalia, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Libya, Egypt, Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Isreal, Oman, Palestinian Territories, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the UAE.
We selected 10 companies that showed the most innovative solutions. All the ventures had an opportunity to participate in the Seedstars Investment Readiness Program, a customizable educational program that helps early-stage businesses get ready for fundraising.
Migport, from Turkey, is an online platform for refugees to share knowledge with each other and ask questions to locals for their daily problems.LISTEN TO THE VENTURE'S STORY
NaTakallam, from the USA, leverages technology to solve the challenge of millions of highly educated displaced persons with no access to an income.CHECK THE VENTURE'S WEBSITE
Life Shelter, from Denmark, provides the preferred shelter solution for temporary communities.LISTEN TO THE VENTURE'S STORY
Shezlong (from Egypt) is an online psychotherapy platform for Arab people to connect with licenced and qualified therapists Private and anonymous.LISTEN TO THE VENTURE'S STORY
Leaf Global (Rwanda) provides digital financial services so that refugees and migrants can store and transport assets across borders—no smartphone required.LISTEN TO THE VENTURE'S STORY
7keema (Egypt) is the first of its kind in on-demand home-nursing services in Africa & the Middle East.CHECK THE VENTURE'S WEBSITE
Denko Kunafoni (Mali) builds a technical platform that sensitizes and gives health advice to women, pregnant women and to babies up to 5.CHECK THE VENTURE'S WEBSITE
eCampus (Ghana) allows students, job seekers and learners, in general, to assess their knowledge in topics and also readiness for exams & employment.READ THE VENTURE'S STORY
Natal Cares (Nigeria) harnesses the power of low-cost innovation and mobile technology to reduce maternal and infant mortality in rural communities.CHECK THE VENTURE'S WEBSITE