GABORONE - Highlighting the opportunities Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) can bring to communities and championing active support for local talent across the board, Orange Botswana held the 12th edition of the Orange Social Venture Prize, followed by an award ceremony that was held on the 21st of October 2022 at Orange Botswana Head Office-Rooftop. Established in 2011, the platform rewards innovative projects based on Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) which aim to improve the living conditions of people in Africa and the Middle East. It is designed to reward the best innovative and socially responsible business projects in fields such as education, healthcare, agriculture, mobile payments and sustainable development..The Orange Social Venture Prize is open to all students, employees and entrepreneurs over the age of 21 with projects or start-ups under three years old. This year three (3) Batswana walked away with the prestige and prize money allocated to Botswana entrants in the first phase of the competition. The winners were:Tefo Matladiile of Course Guide taking home P50,000 in prize money;Mangwa Bakae of Airpay taking home P30,000 in prize money;Poloko Banda of She Speaks Power taking home P20,000 in prize money.Said Orange Botswana CEO, Ms. Nene Maiga, “The Orange Social Venture projects are of paramount importance to us as they have proven to enhance the living conditions not only in Botswana but in Africa and the Middle East as well, one of the several reasons why we at Orange Botswana hold the initiative close to our heart. It is about celebrating the talent across Botswana and continuing to commit ourselves to growing and nurturing the youth and developing an entrepreneurial spirit across the Nation. This platform serves as a catalyst for encouraging innovation amongst Batswana and rewards projects based on Information and Communication Technologies (ICT).”.The Orange Social Venture Prize competition brings recognition and exposure to start-ups, and provides even greater potential for growth. The start-ups are contenders amongst the very best in the world, on par with international youth innovatorsThe Orange Social Venture Prize competition takes place in two phases: National phase, during which each of the 17 participating Orange businesses across Africa and the Middle East assess the projects submitted in their respective countries, with a view towards selecting 3 winners per country. This means a total of 51 National winners. Course Guide, Airpay and She Speaks Power have successfully been named victors in this phase for 2022.International phase, whereby all 51 National winners compete for an International Grand Prize, which is presented to the 3 final winners at the AfricaCom Awards event. The 3 winners will receive 25,000 Euro, 15,000 Euro and 10,000 Euro respectively, as well as six months of customised digital mentoring and advice from Orange experts. These international awards complete the various prizes delivered locally to all winners..“As Orange Botswana, we will continue to create even more opportunities for the sustainable growth of Botswana and her people. Moreover, we encourage all those that are eligible to apply for this great initiative and to recognise this opportunity for what it is: a platform to change the story of your business for the better. It is an opportunity to truly make your mark and move your business forward, and in doing so, make a difference for fellow Batswana, in the spirit of the National Vision, NDP 11 and indeed the UN SDGs,” concluded Maiga.ENDS.