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Damu Sasa Receives US$20K from Villgro Africa to Enhance their COVID-19 Efforts

Damu Sasa

Villgro Africa, the Kenyan based investor and business incubator has backed Damu Sasa System Limited (DSL) with US$20,000. The funding is to enable them accelerate their efforts at curbing the spread of COVID-19 in the country. Damu Sasa is a healthtech startup running an innovative end-to-end blood services information management platform.

The workings of Damu Sasa? 

Damu-Sasa in its entirety works across the blood ecosystem by helping hospitals source blood from donors and from each other. The company again supports screening, preparation of blood products and inventory as well transfusions management. 

Its system helps mobilize donors, tracks their donations while giving them digital access to their donation history.

The DSL team is known for working closely with health facilities and other multi-sectoral partners to increase voluntary donations from across the population. The goal for them is being able to deliver sufficient supply of safe blood while improving tracking and reporting of utilization nationwide. 

Damu Sasa
Damu Sasa app

Damu Sasa tackling COVID-19 spread

During this COVID-19 period, the DSL team has made available online booking for blood donation appointments, personalized booking links for each hospital, evidence based educational articles, blood screening tracking capacity for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, and mobile text reminders of safe practices to blood donors.

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According to the press statement released, the co-founder and executive chair of healthtech investor, Villgro Africa, they are thrilled to support the work of the DSL team, who are a young and vibrant company committed to solving a real life challenge. 

He added that by their collaborations with Innovative Canadians for Change (ICChange), they are looking forward to being a part of the efforts in managing safe and efficient blood donations in Kenya, and very importantly, in a sustainable model.

Aside the grant, Villgro Africa will also provide technical assistance to enable the team to enhance their capacity with respect to COVID-19 blood management related capabilities while also supporting ongoing fundraising efforts. 

Making his remarks, Dr. Matunda Nyanchama, Chairman of DSL said, “At Damu-Sasa, we are really excited with this partnership because it will help us address key concerns occasioned by the pandemic, improve potential blood donor numbers and hence help alleviate, to the degree possible, the perennial blood shortages.”

The Nairobi based healthtech startup currently operates in countries, having served over 9,000 people with blood. Their efforts have seen them received donations from 55,000.

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Story originally published on Villgro Africa

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News

9 Startups Accepted into the First Next Health Accelerator with $15K Seed Funding

Next Health Accelerator
image courtesy: Valorigo

Intrepid Entrepreneurs, a non-profit designed to catalyze the power and promise of young people and women to fundamentally advance their societies, recruited nine startups for the inaugural cohort of the Next Health Accelerator.

Female, African entrepreneurs with a minimum viable product (MVP) from 26 countries applied to the program. After a rigorous review process, nine startups from seven countries were selected to begin the program in March 2021. The investor readiness accelerator is six months long and includes $15,000 seed funding, international mentors and partners, business support services, and value chain access.

The Next Health Accelerator’s focus on sexual and reproductive health is founded on the premise that unmet needs for sexual education, menstrual hygiene management, family planning, medication abortion, and STI diagnosis and treatment will be most sustainably delivered by local African enterprises.

Sexual and Reproductive Health issues directly affect 300 million women and girls on the continent and the productivity of the entire continent. For the continent to prosper and support its burgeoning youth population, it must harness the demographic dividend with access to equitable healthcare and economic opportunities. Next Health Accelerator addresses both.

Next Health Accelerator

The 2021 cohort includes:

  • Rocket Health: Provides telemedicine and pharmacy services for SRH needs including convenient lab test retrieval and medication delivery in Uganda
  • Verifie: Delivers STI self-tests and treatment products via doorstep delivery in Ghana
  • Pharmaserve: Specializes in delivering high-quality pharmaceuticals in Nigeria through a fully integrated inventory monitoring system
  • Girls Pride: Provides menstrual hygiene management education and skills training to create reusable pads in The Gambia
  • Pad-Up Creations: Employs over 100 people in Nigeria to produce single-use, chemical-free pads sold in 16 countries
  • Valorigo: Manufacturers single-use sanitary eco-friendly pads made from locally grown bamboo in the Congo
  • The Grace Cup: Delivers SRH education and reusable menstrual cups in Kenya
  • Kosmotive: Provides SRH information and access to SRH self-care products in Rwanda
  • Massira: Delivers SRH information interactively as well as access to SRH services and products through an online community in Ghana 
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Lindsey Simmonds, the Co-founder of Intrepid Entrepreneurs in a press statement said,

“After 15 years in philanthropy, I believe now more than ever that it is women who will solve women’s health challenges and it is Africans who will solve Africa’s development challenges.”

She continued that, development policies made in Washington, D.C. or London need to make room for the power and promise of the youth and women on the African continent. And on this premises, their Next Health Accelerator catalyzes African startups to investor readiness to make scalable, sustainable impact imbued with the commitment and determination that only comes from homegrown ideas.

Visit the intrepidentrepreneurs.org to learn more about the Next Health Accelerator 2021.

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