I've recently begun a social enterprise called Masawa with my co-founder, Julie Zollmann, that focuses on providing people in developing countries with greater access to information through mobile applications. Also involved in this start-up are Mariah Levin and Christine Martin, fellow 2009 Blakeley Fellows and Yanina Seltzer, a 2008 Fellow.
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We've received enthusiastic support from various large international aid organization, academics and technologists. We were highlighted as an outstanding commitment by the [url link="http://member.clintonglobalinitiative.org/Page.aspx?pid=3581" target="new"]Clinton Global Initiative[/url], and we also won the [url target="new" link="http://fletcher.tufts.edu/news/2010/04/features/masawa.shtml"]Tufts Business Plan Competition[/url]. We recently incorporated the organization, are waiting for our 501(c)3 status and are very fortunate to have Kim Wilson and Jenny Aker on our board.
The impetus for Masawa came from the experiences gained last fall and this January in Haiti, as well as from the project I worked on last summer in Niger as a Blakeley Fellow. This experience was tremendously helpful in realizing not only the great power of mobile applications in providing information to the poor, but also in how to operationally deliver these services.
Fortunately, we've been very successful at finding potential partnership organizations, and we are currently aggressively fundraising for the proof-of-concept and pilot phases of the project
-Joshua Haynes, Blakeley Fellow 2009