This event was organized by Janati Nakimera, the Entrepreneurship Liaison to Humanitarian Activities & Sustainable Development (IEEE SIGHT), together with IEEE Uganda Section and IEEE Special Interest Group on Humanitarian Technology (SIGHT).
This webinar, held on 03 May 2021, aimed to appreciate the work that IEEE SIGHT does towards the funding of projects within the IEEE Uganda Section and encourages more volunteers to apply for IEEE Humanitarian Activities Committee (HAC) / SIGHT funding.
The moderator was Dan Ahimbisibwe, an active IEEE volunteer and a member of the IEEE Uganda Section Steering Committee.
Herbert Lwanga, Chair, IEEE SIGHT, gave a presentation on the work that IEEE SIGHT does, as well as the mission and vision of IEEE SIGHT, which involves working with local volunteers to implement sustainable solutions that make a long-term difference in the lives of people.
Some of the beneficiaries of IEEE SIGHT funding also shared about their projects and made the following remarks.
I received funding for the project to locally make reusable masks for internally displaced persons (IDPs) living in camps in South Sudan. I partnered with a local organization based in South Sudan and this smoothed my work relating to the distribution of the already made masks.
One of the challenges I encountered was that the IDPs had other problems they were facing, such as timely access to food, health care, and education, and they made several requests to have them addressed. The project was not focused on addressing these issues. Therefore, this leaves a gap for other humanitarian organizations and people to come in and address some of the issues faced by the IDPs.
I received funding for my project relating to a hands-free door opening system. I worked together with ten students and was able to complete the work in three months, which was earlier than the predicted due date of six months.
The greatest challenge I encountered was the lack of technical experts in operating the 3D machines and some of the companies we approached to have the system installed had excessively complicated administrative procedures that caused delays. I do appreciate the importance of teamwork and networking as this greatly helped us accomplish our goal.
Silver Bolt received funding on the project of making lightweight face shields. This project was carried out to respond to the national call by the Ministry of health to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The lightweight face shields were donated to the frontline health works as a public and personal health control measure. The design of the masks fabricated by Silver Bolt is still being utilized in making more shields on demand. The biggest challenge faced was limited mobility due to the measures put in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Teamwork and sufficient planning enabled the team to complete the project in time.