DHL recently launched the Young Entrepreneur for Sustainability (YES) awards in Pakistan, Singapore, Thailand, Bangladesh and the Phillipines.
Ayesha Saifuddin from Kaarvan Crafts Foundation won the 2007 national award for Pakistan. Kaarvan Crafts provides employment, training and product facilities for women entrepreneurs in underprivileged communities who wish to produce and sell goods such as bags, candles, and clothes. (See more details about all the participants of the award in this PDF)
The other piece of news, however is that Atif Mumtaz, one of the partners at Cogilent Systems / Brightspyre was a runner-up for his non-profit UM Healthcare Trust, which aims to provide an internet-based telemedicine system available in areas of Pakistan where access to high quality healthcare is limited.
I think what they’re doing is noble, hi-tech, and has created significant results to demonstrate the effectiveness of telemedicine systems. Read more for details about their non-profit.
With partnership from stakeholders such as APPNA, COMSATs and Digital Vision Program, and even Stanford University, the project has conducted a pilot project of the system in Skardu. COMSATS provided them a dedicated satellite connection in Skardu and medical professionals for the test. Atif’s team provided the open-source telemedicine system.
The system itself used a stored-and-forward approach to telemedicine to coordinate and get feedback from specialists in the US.
Their results show that 2000 patients visited the center in the first two-year pilot period, where 77% of the cases were specialist dermatological cases for which specialist doctors had not been available in Skardu at that time.
I think these people are doing a great cause and showing the social benefits of leveraging IT technology for advancing the human spirit and cause. For more about their project (their research results about the systems are pretty interesting) read here.
Congratulations Atif and keep it up.