#MyLittleBigThing 2023 SDGs Innovation Challenge
Applications are now open for the #MyLittleBigThing 2023 SDGs Innovation Challenge. #MyLittleBigThing is an initiative by MK-Africa, a woman-owned SME based in Nairobi Kenya that offers consultancy services in sustainability training, strategy development, and reporting to companies that are looking to create measurable social, economic, and environmental impact.
Through #MyLittleBigThing’s partnerships with Safaricom, Cambridge Institute of Sustainability Leadership, PKF, South African Airways, and Crew 2030, MK-Africa trains, mentors and supports young people to innovate and set up social enterprises based on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and sustainable business practices. #MyLittleBigThing is inspired by Nobel laureate, the late, Wangari Maathai’s ‘Little Thing’ of planting trees. We run the following programs targeted at university students across Africa: –
- SDGs Innovation Challenge – this is an annual SDGs innovation competition that encourages the development of ideas based on the SDGs that will help us to find the best home-grown solutions to Africa’s sustainability issues. The annual competition features a particular set of SDGs and is open to undergraduate university students from across Africa as described in the section below. Owing to the Covid-19 global pandemic, we ran the #MyLittleBigThing 2020 Challenge completely online. This included online programs and events such as the online award ceremony and several webinars featuring prominent guests such as Sanda Ojiambo, the UN Global Compact CEO and Executive Director, the Kenya ICT Cabinet Secretary, Prof. Bitange Ndemo, former PS and academician among others. Information about these webinars can be found on our website and social media pages.
- #MyLittleBigThing Academy – this is online learning on Sustainability and SDGs offered through our Online Platform on https://learning.mylittlebigthing.com. Through the Academy, we offer GRIR Certified Sustainability training programs, Human-Centered Design Thinking, and Entrepreneurship, Impact Creation among others. The training programs are offered FREE to contestants in the annual SDGs Innovation Challenge and at a subsidized rate to undergraduate university students. We have also run other successful online training programs including the Youth Digital Inclusion Webinar Series with UNDP Kenya in October 2020 and the YALI East Africa Sustainability Cohort Training in March 2020.
- Mentorship for Leadership Program – top sustainability leaders from across Africa mentor the finalists from the annual competition for a year. The mentorship program includes bi-monthly meetings as well as training programs on human-centered design, the Theory of Change, Fundraising, Business Registration, and Presentation Skills. At the end of 12 months, the mentees are able to register social enterprises based on the SDGs, successfully seek funding opportunities and also go to market with a minimum viable product. We also recruit and train interested university students from across Africa on how to be ambassadors for the SDGs at their various universities.