Many organisations have been participating in “pad drives” to help ensure that sanitary pads are more accessible across the country. These are lofty goals but the biggest problem has been finding a solution to ensure that the sanitary pads are available, and delivered timely and on a consistent basis.
Divathon is hosting a hackathon that requires teams to come up with a digital solution that will help ease the process and delivery of sanitary wear from donor to beneficiary. The hackathon will be hosted from the 30th of November to the 2nd of December in Victoria Falls.
DIVATHON is a non-profit initiative to organise hackathons that are female centric. Developers/Programmers will come together to a two-day hackathon event, where they will come up with solutions to real female problem we are facing in our country and come up workable applications in teams.
Why is it being hosted in Victoria Falls?
After contacting one of the organisers of the Divathon, they are hosting their Divathon in Victoria Falls for two reasons;
- Div:a seeks to promote both technology and tourism thus for them it made sense to have the Divathon in Victoria Falls;
- They have partnered with Carl Joshua Ncube and will be utilising the Zambezi House as their venue for the Hackathon as part of this partnership.
Will hosting the Hackathon in Victoria Falls affect attendance? It depends. If Div:a can ensure that there’s some provision for transport then that might ensure that there’s no effect on attendance and hopefully that’s the case because the Divathon is a really interesting concept.
Rules to qualify for the Divathon
There are number of eligibility
All applications should be done in teams, minimum of 2 members and maximum 4, each team can have, e.g. a developer, a strategist, a designer and an expert in women and girl child affairs.
Applications from all-female teams or teams that have only one male participants will be accepted. However, ALL Team Leaders MUST be female( The team leader does not have to be a developer/programmer)
All participants MUST be 18 years old or above
All participants must have a laptop.
Though the call is global and solvers can come from all over the world, the solutions will be tested and applied in field contexts in Zimbabwe.
All entrants need to demonstrate a willingness to share their experiences and learning to help establish a body of knowledge that can bring about a sustained change
Applicants need to ensure they have the capacity to adapt their existing solution to address the problem, or, to develop a prototype of the solution within the hackathon time frame. Limited support will be provided to help achieve this, but applicants must be able to develop and test prototypes during the hackathon.
What do winners get?
The winning team will get a chance to work with Div;a on how to fund and make sure that the solution reaches full production. There will be other prizes but the representative I spoke to said they had not finalized on what these prizes will be.
DIVATHON is a great idea
Some people are adamant that having female centric events or programs might be the opposite of progressive movements as it further increases the social divide but in this context I think having the Divathon is great in that it allows women who are in their shells to come to a comfortable and familiar environment and express themselves. I read an interesting blog post -which I won’t link to as we are looking for permission to post as a guest post- detailing why women fail in tech and a big factor was having the confidence and self-belief to actually stand up and create impactful solutions. Events such as the Divathon give women a comfortable environment to create products that will actually go into implementation and projects like these may be the spark needed for some to realize how innovative they are.