The 4 Youth by Youth (4YBY) Innovation Bootcamp finale took place on Thursday, May 30th, 2019, after four weeks of progressive and hands-on training with the participants. The 4-week Innovation Bootcamp delivered in partnership with the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research, Saint Louis University, New York University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, was organized for young people to delve into the world of entrepreneurship and innovation management skills while applying basic research principles that will help encourage HIV self-testing among young people in Nigeria.
Participants were trained on several modules, including creating strategic planning techniques, orchestrating an innovation ecosystem, developing a minimum viable product, cost models and budget plans, managing ethical issues around HIV and research, engaging with key community stakeholders and so much more.
The selected top teams were then tasked to present a 10-minute pitch deck at the event, after which they were judged based on feasibility, desirability and potential impact of their proposed innovation plan.
Speaking on the conclusion and impact of the Innovation Bootcamp, I-TEST Principal Investigator, Dr Juliet Iwelunmor said: “Our ultimate goal is the young people in Nigeria, the youths, who will be the leaders and partners of the HIV self testing in Nigeria. We just concluded our four weeks boot camp where the winners of designathon were selected to get trainings on Research, entrepreneurship, and engagement with key stakeholders on how to promote HIV self testing in Nigeria. ”
Team SMART, made up of 5 team members namely, Isaac Moses, Afeez Muheeb Richard Oghenekome, Tosin Ikuyiminu and Jennifer Oriaku all emerged as the first place winner of the 4YBY Innovation Bootcamp Finale 2019. Team B-Star and Team Genra emerged as second and third place winners, respectively.
Speaking at the end of the event, representative of the winning team, Tosin Ikuyiminu said: ” We are very excited as this is a dream come true for us. It is quite encouraging to be rewarded after a lot of hard work. We look forward to applying lessons learned in the Bootcamp, and hopefully making an impact in society.”
The 4YBY team had successfully organized the first-ever HIV Self-Testing Designathon in Nigeria, where over 60 young people collaborated to develop prototypes for new services and products for promoting self-testing for HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases guided by Human-centered, design thinking framework.