31.5% of the already funded projects, are focused on IEEE Region 8

Earlier this year HAC created a joint call with IEEE SIGHT Projects to support grassroots humanitarian technology and sustainable development projects that addressed the COVID-19 situation by IEEE members in their local communities.

During that call, HAC/SIGHT received 112 qualified proposals from 29 countries in 5 IEEE Regions, and funded 73 proposals from 25 countries of 5 regions with a total of $308k funding. One special note is that one project was funded thanks to the generosity of donors to the IEEE Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund.

In addition, as it is mentioned in the official announcement, HAC/SIGHT are providing ongoing support to these projects through Communities of Practice (CoPs) around common thematic areas, such as medical devices and ICT, to increase project impact, as well as member engagement and professional development.

The IEEE Region 8 Response

Members of IEEE welcomed this opportunity, with 23 IEEE HAC/SIGHT COVID-19 Projects Focused in IEEE Region 8 having been funded. The majority of these projects are from IEEE Region 8 sections, while one funded project is from the IEEE Philadelphia Section focusing on Rwanda. In other words, that is related to the 31.5% of the total projects.

However, there is one common feature for all 23 funded projects for R8. All are focused on the African continent, and in further details at: South Africa, Uganda, Nigeria, Lebanon, Tunisia and Rwanda.

Calling again for proposals

With the interest being high, HAC and SIGHT are once again soliciting IEEE member proposals that utilize technology to fight against COVID-19. As the pandemic has not only affected health, but also exacerbated poverty and laid bare systemic inequality throughout the world, HAC/SIGHT are prioritizing the following project areas:

  • immediate impact – medical devices, infection control devices, PPE/community sensitization, ICT, or other immediate needs in fighting the virus
  • poverty mitigation – in particular, food security or energy security
  • inequality reduction – in particular, increasing access to education, internet, infrastructure, clean water, or skills development

IEEE HAC/SIGHT has created a guide to help on Common Application Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them which is available for anyone interested at the Funding Opportunities of IEEE HAC.

All eligibility criteria for the projects application are available at the September 2020 Special Call for Proposals related to COVID-19 with the deadline for this round of projects’ call to be on September 15th.