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Okuafo Foundation expands capacity with $600k Zayed Sustainability Prize win #FindThePioneer

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In January 2020, Ghanaian agritech startup Okuafo Foundation was awarded $600 000 after it won the Food category in the Zayed Sustainability Prize 2020.

Mustapha Diyaol Haqq is the Co-Founder of Okuafo Foundation.  The Ghana-based agritech startup has developed a smartphone application that utilizes artificial intelligence , machine learning and data analytics to predict and detect crop diseases and infestations and offers recommended solutions, based on scientific knowledge, in real-time. The application was designed to be used by rural farmers in Ghana, and operates without an Internet connection.

The application has allowed farmers to reduce their expenses related to purchasing crop pesticides, and increase their crop productivity and harvest by up to 50 per cent, thereby increasing their profits and disposable income.

According to Mr Haqq, the $600,000 reward from Zayed Sustainability Prize is enabling Okuafo Foundation to expand its capacity.

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The world’s sustainability pioneers are working on the frontlines to address the global pandemic and tackle the world’s biggest challenges across the areas of Health, Food, Energy and Water.
The Zayed Sustainability Prize is searching for pioneers who are playing a dynamic role in transforming communities and impacting lives through inspiring, innovative solutions.

#FindThePioneer: The Zayed Sustainability Prize is looking for people transforming communities and impacting lives

Rooted in the belief that sustainability is a shared responsibility, #FindThePioneer invites you, the public, to take part in the Zayed Sustainability Prize by nominating potential candidates and encouraging them to apply. Visit www.ZayedSustainabilityPrize.com to nominate someone of to submit an entry.

Nominees for the Health, Food, Energy and Water categories must be small-to-medium sized enterprises or non-profit organisations that have an existing sustainability solution with demonstrable impact. Nominees for the Global High School category must be high schools with a student-led project proposal in any of the four sustainability areas. Make your nomination by June 11th, 2020.

Inspired by the first president of the UAE, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the annual $3-million prize is the United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) leading sustainability award for recognising innovative solutions that are making an impact.

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Africa Games Armwrestling: Golden Arms to grab Golden Gold for Ghana, receives boost from NHIS, HD+, KOFATA and others.

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The National Armwrestling team, Golden Arms has set an ambitious target of securing a third of Ghana’s total medal haul at the forthcoming Africa Games scheduled for March 08 to 23,2024.

Coming into the Games for the first time, the Golden Arms are poised and ready to make history again in order to add up to Ghana’s medal haul towards its host and win agenda.

Mr. Charles Osei Asibey, President of the Ghana Armwrestling Federation (GAF) said the team being  in camp since February is unprecedented in their preparation for any major championship thus super ready to deliver at the continental stage on promise.

“We are ready to give the rest of Africa a tough competition as always. We have medals targets for Ghana, my hardworking team has had enough preparations and I am convinced they will show up to put up a good show.”

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Currently in camp at Legon, the Golden Arms have received major boost from the Armwrestling board, development partners National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) through their sports is good health agenda spearheaded by CEO Dr. Oko Boye, SES HD Plus through the Kids Armwrestling future champions program, Kofata Motors, the Ghana Olympic Committee (GOC) through the federations support, Minister and Ministry of Youth & Sports who ensured Armwrestling is well placed, the Local Organizing Committee and friends, all to get the team thrive at the 13th Africa Games in Accra. The various support directed towards training equipment, medics, team preparation, kitting and other logistical needs.

Mr. Osei Asibey urged Ghanaians to rally behind the team as they go in to conquer the rest of Africa on March 15 and  16, 2024 at the Cedi Hall, University of Ghana.

The Ghana National Armwrestling Team, the Golden Arms having dominated the continent for the past yeare, will hunt for Gold and bring Ghana that glory it deserves.

Source www.ghanaarmwrestling.org

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Holy Child alumni illuminate the path forward amidst national school power crisis

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In recent times, the narrative of power challenges in Ghanaian schools has escalated, with numerous public institutions such as Mfantsipim School, Accra Academy, and Mondo Senior High Technical School among others facing abrupt electricity disconnections. 

This persistent issue highlights the dire need for sustainable solutions in powering educational facilities, crucial for maintaining the quality of education.

Stepping into the spotlight with a pioneering initiative, the 1999 alumni of Holy Child School have set a remarkable precedent.

 In a bid to combat these electricity woes, these visionary women have successfully funded the transition of their alma mater to 75% solar energy. This initiative not only addresses the immediate problem of power outages and financial strains on the school’s budget but also serves as a beacon of climate-positive action with the potential for carbon credit benefits.

Founded in 1946 by the Society of the Holy Child Jesus, Holy Child School has long stood as a bastion of educational excellence and societal impact in Ghana. Its alumni include distinguished personalities such as Ghana’s Ambassador to France, Anna Bossman; Goldman Sachs Vice President, Sabina Dankwah; and University of Ghana’s Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Nana Aba Amfo, to name a few.

The Solar Project

This solar project, a gift from the 1999 alumni commemorating their 25th anniversary and coinciding with the school’s 78th speech and prize-giving day, symbolizes a profound act of giving back and forward.

 In an exclusive interview with the Business and Financial Times, engineer Ing. Mrs. Sheila Enyonam Akyea, president of the year group, shared:  “This project builds on the foundation laid by our predecessors. We’re thrilled to extend their initial contribution, ensuring every corner of our school benefits. It’s our way of ensuring current and future students receive the same level of empowerment and opportunity we had.”

Project’s Committee Chair Ing. Mrs. Teresa Kyei-Mensah, mentioned the substantial investment the solar installation demands, emphasizing ongoing fundraising efforts.

she said: “Once completed, the initiative promises significant savings for the school and, by extension, the Ghana Education Service, redirecting funds towards essential educational resources,” she added.

Solar power, increasingly recognized for its affordability and environmental benefits, stands as a viable solution for Ghana’s educational sector and its broader climate goals. With abundant sunshine year-round, Ghana is ideally positioned to harness solar energy, reducing the financial burden on public resources while contributing to global carbon reduction efforts.

The project was completed in January 2024 after a 1-month testing phase. The year group eagerly anticipate the handover ceremony at the 78th Speech and Prize-Giving Day of Holy Child School in Cape Coast on Saturday, 9th March 2024 marking a significant milestone in their commitment to sustainable development and quality education in Ghana. 

This initiative not only lights the way for other schools grappling with similar challenges but also underscores the powerful impact of alumni engagement in shaping a brighter future for the next generation.