The Authority of Social Contribution – Ma’an announced the ten winning teams in the first cycle of the Ma’an Social Incubator program. The winning projects include a mobile app that helps convert text to sign language and another that helps people with visual impairments to navigate their surroundings through sensors and visual recognition.
Since launching the program in May earlier this year, 130 ventures applied for the Ma’an Social Incubator program from as far afield as Brazil, Denmark, France, Nigeria and India. Later in August, a shortlist of 25 nominated teams were invited to pitch their solutions before a panel who came together to decide on the final ten winning teams.
The teams will have the opportunity to test their social start-up ideas and gain an in-depth understanding of the market, in addition to attending a series of plenary workshops and receiving mentor advice that will help them develop their idea into a product or service, beginning in September and continuing for 16 weeks. Ma’an will also host ‘demo days’ to present the concepts of the ten winning team organised for review and evaluation, as well as to leverage funding from investors.
The 10 successful start-ups are:
1. Accessible Ad: Platform for information, expertise, training and support to ensure effective accessibility for People of Determination in Abu Dhabi
2. The Butterfly Foundation: Advocacy agency to bring support and empowerment in the hands of People of Determination in Abu Dhabi
3. The Camp: Inclusion-safe, seasonal, mobile sleepover camps for Children of Determination in the UAE
4. I Hear You: Mobile app that enables communication from text to sign language and vice versa
5. Inclusive: Online platform serving as an umbrella for all things inclusion-related in the UAE
6. Key2Enable: Assistive technology empowering People of Determination to use tablets, computers and smartphones with adapted hardware and accessories
7. Martha Edu: Educational smart cards and mobile app to educate hearing impaired children and parents on signing language
8. Ioptyc by Nexart: Solution for people with visual impairment to navigate their surroundings through the use of distance judging sensors & visual recognition technology
9. RAB3I: Social venture offering People of Determination an opportunity to attend recreational activities with a (trained) ‘buddy’ who shares similar interests
10. Heroes of Hope: Social enterprise delivering equal opportunities for People of Determination, including recreational activities, work opportunities, and sporting events