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Some entrepreneurs sought to fight pollution; for others the goal was to promote inclusion. In their own ways, they have all taken action. The four winners of North Africa’s first call for proposals in “Shared Innovation” have put forward cutting-edge solutions to promote sustainable development.

Four innovative projects were awarded for their creative approaches to development, answering AFD Group’s call for proposals in “Shared Innovation”, launched last year.

The four winning proposals were: 

  • A project to repurpose textile waste and transform it into bricks for eco-construction
  • An inclusive, AI-based mobile app for deaf and mute people
  • A process for transforming olive waste into bioenergy and 
  • A card game to teach children about the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs

Spearheaded by young entrepreneurs from North Africa, the Brickatex, Edu_tech, Bioheat and Co-Play projects were selected because of their significant potential to inspire others, the possibility of replication elsewhere in Africa and the developing world, and their ability to make either a direct or indirect contribution to promoting gender equality

“With this challenge, we do not offer funding, but rather shine a light on initiatives that aim to make a positive impact on communities, regions and the environment”, says Alexis Frémeaux, Head of AFD’s Innovation Unit. “We have decided to work with “The Impact Story” channel to boost the visibility of these four projects and help them find new partners.”

Innovating to promote the SDGs

The call for proposals was open to all local players in the innovation and/or sustainable development sectors, from Morocco to Egypt. “These projects are emblematic of innovation in North Africa, and are a source of inspiration on both sides of the Mediterranean,” says Alexis Frémeaux. 
Launched by AFD Group, the “Shared Innovation” initiative aims to promote innovative solutions for sustainable development, facilitate their replication and foster ties between different players. 

This call for proposals is aligned with other innovation initiatives supported by the Group, including the Social & Inclusive Business Camp and the Fund for Innovation in Development, which has assisted over 60 projects since its launch in 2021.