Thursday, July 18, 2024

Sightsavers and DeafTawk Welcome the First Cohort of Innovation Challenge Futuremakers

Sightsavers, an international organization committed to preventing avoidable blindness and promoting disability inclusion and DeafTawk, a Pakistani startup dedicated to improving the lives of deaf individuals, are thrilled to announce the selection of the first cohort for the Innovation Challenge Futuremakers (ICF) program.

The ICF program, a result of a strategic partnership between Sightsavers and DeafTawk, is a fast-track acceleration program designed to cater to the needs of entrepreneurs with disabilities in Pakistan. The program offers a hybrid experience that combines virtual engagement with valuable offline activities, providing a unique opportunity for startups to grow and thrive.

From a pool of 70 applications, the selection panel, comprising industry experts, mentors, and entrepreneurs, rigorously evaluated and interviewed the candidates. A total of 8 outstanding startups were selected as part of the first cohort. The selected startups coming in from various regions of Pakistan represent a diverse range of innovative solutions and are poised to make a significant impact in their respective domains.

Munazza Gillani, Country Director of Sightsavers Pakistan Office, shared her thoughts on the program, saying, “The Innovation Challenge Futuremakers is a testament to our commitment to fostering disability inclusion and promoting entrepreneurial spirit among individuals with disabilities. We are excited to witness the transformative journey of these startups and look forward to seeing the positive impact they will create.”

Ali Shabbar, CEO of DeafTawk, expressed his enthusiasm for the program, stating, “We are delighted to welcome the first cohort of the Innovation Challenge Futuremakers. These startups demonstrate the immense talent and creativity present in the disability entrepreneurship ecosystem in Pakistan. Through the ICF program, we aim to provide the necessary support and resources to empower these entrepreneurs and their ventures to drive positive change.”

The startups selected for the first cohort of the Innovation Challenge Futuremakers are Attendant Service Providers (ASP), Digital Inclusive Library, Fresh N Frozen, HutKarlo, Khaas Foodz, Quadpar Auto Engineering, TailorBird Stitch Studio and The World of Art.

The first cohort of the Innovation Challenge Futuremakers is set to embark on an exciting journey of growth and development. Through our custom-designed curriculum, mentorship, networking and investment opportunities, startup toolkits, and a chance to attend global conferences these startups will receive the support they need to scale their businesses and create a strong social and economic impact.

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