Rise for women and hack with a purpose

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Bayer South Africa is partnering with the Empire Partner Foundation (EPF) to launch the Rise for Women’s Health Hackathon.

Bringing together some of the most talented young minds, influencers, policy makers and experts to develop innovative ways to raise awareness on women’s health and sexual and reproductive education. This is the motive behind RISE, a hackathon organized in collaboration with the Empire Partner Foundation (EPF) and Bayer South Africa.

Technology can be used as a tool to solve some of the key socio-economic challenges that we face today. EPF is a non-profit organization established in 2016 with the sole purpose of empowering the youth to build a better South Africa and the African continent through technology. Under the youth pillar, EPF provides young people with access to technology and digital skills training, which includes coding boot camps, hackathons, and mentorship opportunities to help the youth develop their skills and realize their full potential[1].

Health challenges on the continent require big solutions and a shared commitment among dedicated non-governmental partners, corporates, and the community at large. Since young people have fresh, original ideas that can help shape the future, it is crucial to include their voices when discussing solutions around health. This Rise for Women Hackathon provides an opportunity for collaboration to bring those unique ideas to fruition.

This event provided mechanisms by which health care professionals can be kept informed and upskilled on all contraceptive methods without having to only rely on face-to-face interaction.

The hackathon kicked off at 9am on Saturday, 8 July 2023 with solutions submitted by 13.30pm on Sunday, 9 July 2023. Teams were able to participate virtually as well as physically at Bayer South Africa’s head office in Isando, with mentors on hand to assist where needed.

“Since our entry into Africa dating back to the 1920s, and as a leader in women’s health, Bayer is committed towards improving the health, rights, and economic status of women around the world, which is a fundamental basis for greater equality, education, and prosperity for all”, Colin Tyrer, Cluster Divisional Head at Bayer Pharmaceuticals South East and West Africa.

This initiative expands on Bayer’s long-standing work to make contraception accessible and raise awareness of its benefits, giving women the chance to take control of their future while contributing to raising healthier families.

“EFP was excited to work with Bayer in hosting their first ever Hackathon in South Africa to develop innovative solutions aimed at Raising Awareness and Information on Women’s Health, Sexual and Reproductive Education. We are excited to see and share what solutions the youth of South Africa design in this hackathon”, Mikhial Mariemuthu, Managing Director at Empire Partner Foundation.

The end result of the Rise for Women Hackathon saw innovative solutions designed to reach young women from different cultural backgrounds and to increase awareness and education about contraceptives, hormones, fertility, and menstruation.

[1] https://www.empirepartnerfoundation.org/aboutus.html