PATTERN RECOGNITION unlock other partnerships locally and internationally. Communications and public affairs head at Google SA, Mich Atagana, says GIC provides a yearlong accelerator programme, in partnership with local organisations, which includes coaching, training and hands-on support. Funding is allocated in tranches, and is assigned to each enterprise as it reaches a set of predefined milestones, says Atagana. “This ensures that winners get a package that includes strategic support, funding and the assistance of Google volunteers to help them make the most of their award. The idea is that they get as much as they want or need.” Yonela Khohloko, a Zlto user, says she first heard about the platform at Rlabs. “I was on the internet but did not have an income and felt like Zlto was a good way to cover some of my expenses. “I volunteered by giving out food, spending my time teaching unemployed people new skills and helped them apply for work,” says Khohloko, who learnt leadership and facilitation skills during this process. “I earn 2,000 Zlto a month, which helps me buy clothes, personal items, stationery and books. The process is not too difficult, but requires a bit of patience especially with vendor staff who aren’t so tech savvy,” says Khohloko. Zlto has a team of 12, nine of whom are full-time employees: developers, designers, advisers, account managers and operations staff. The platform has tracked over 1.5-million hours of work. And it is working with Unicef on multiple projects together that will see it launch on Moya Messenger and Whatsapp, and are building a Pan-african youth marketplace called Yoma.africa. Most recently it has launched what it calls an Essential Fund to disburse R10m worth of food vouchers, electricity and airtime to the youth using Zlto. “This initiative will allow us to support more than 200,000 beneficiaries directly with essential goods during this time,” Van der Meulen says. x x . financialmail.co.za 15 July 9 - July 15, 2020
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