Enabled to Build Technology Startups
VP Foundation aims to use trainings, mentorship and funding to enable people living with disabilities to build tech companies in Abuja
What problem does your idea solve?
In my community, people living with disability are considered to always be in need of help. This stigma prevents them from being integrated into main stream society. We intend to change the way people living with disabilities are perceived especially in the technology/startup ecosystem.
Explain your idea
Our idea is to create an elaborate program, that not only equips people with disabilities with the technological and entrepreneurship skills needed to create technological solutions and build tech startups, but also provide mentorship and capital to the most promising participants. This will change the narrative and the public perception of people living with disabilities from "people always needing help" to "smart people creating solutions". I believe that people living with disabilities are as smart as any other person, this project proves that and therefor creates room for opportunities for them. Here is how it works;
Take Jane a 22 year old lady that depends on her wheel chair to get around. Jane is very smart, but has not been able to get a job for the past 2 years, because anytime she shows up at interviews, employers take one look at her and dismiss the thought of employing her because of the general stereotype. Jane applies for the VP Foundation startup Academy and after 6 months for intensive training, mentorship and networking, Jane is able to create a tech solution that begins to gain traction. Jane is now her own boss and can tell her story, which begins to change the narrative about people living with disabilities. Jane then applies for the VP Acceleration program and gets in. She receives $20k in seed funding and a ton of support. Fast forward, 2 years latter, Jane is running a successful tech startup, solving problems, generating revenue and employing others.
People living with disability, interested in entrepreneurship, between the ages of 18 - 35 and living in Abuja. Each cohort will consist of 60 students and we intend to have 2 cohorts a year.
How is your idea unique?
We run a tech accelerator that provides training, funding and mentorship to technology startups solving Africa's problems. We have assembled a formidable team of people with various levels of startup experience, mentors that run some of the most successful tech companies in Nigeria and angel investors looking for innovative companies to invest in. Right now in Nigeria, there is no more qualified organization to execute on this. Our uniqueness is our team, experience and passion for supporting entrepreneurs and entrepreneur training.
Tell us more about you
Ventures Platform is an Accelerator that provides funding, mentorship, training and shared services to technology startups solving the most pressing problems in Africa. In the last year, we have received over 1,000 applications and accepted 17 in 2 cohorts of our accelerator program. We recently started the foundation to build capacity in Entrepreneurship and technology among youths, women and people living with disabilities. To empower them and create a pipeline for our accelerator program.
What are some of your unanswered questions about the idea?
We are still working on a curriculum that can encompass all they need to know into a 6 months program. We don't know if we will be able to get the kind of interest that we are looking for, but we are positive this will make a great difference.
Where will your idea be implemented?
Experience in Implementation Country(ies)
Yes, for more than one year.
Expertise in Sector
I've worked in a sector related to my idea for more than a year.
We are a registered non-profit, charity, NGO, or community-based organization.
Research & Early Testing: I am exploring my idea, gathering the inspiration and information I need to test it.