Kenyan e-health startup Damu-Sasa has received a $20,000 grant funding from Villgro Africa to enable it to enhance its contributions to mitigating the spread of COVID-19.
The startup, which runs an innovative end-to-end blood services information management platform works across the entire blood ecosystem by helping hospitals source blood from donors and from each other. It also supports screening, preparation of blood products and inventory and transfusions management.
The Damu-Sasa system also helps mobilise donors and tracks their donations, while giving them digital access to their donation history.
“Villgro Africa is thrilled to support the work of the Damu-Sasa team, they are a young and vibrant company who are committed to solving this real challenge. Working alongside Innovative Canadians for Change (ICChange), we look forward to being a part of their efforts in managing safe and efficient blood donations in Kenya, and doing so using a sustainable model,” said Rob Beyer, co-founder and executive chair of Villgro Africa.
In addition to the grant, Villgro Africa will also offer technical assistance to enable the team to enhance its capacity with respect to COVID-19 blood management-related capabilities while also supporting ongoing fundraising efforts.
“At Damu-Sasa, we are really excited with this partnership because it will help us address key concerns occasioned by the pandemic, improve potential blood donor numbers and hence help alleviate, to the degree possible, the perennial blood shortages,” said chairman Dr Matunda Nyanchama.
Villgro Africa has enabled access to healthcare to those at the bottom of the pyramid, and successfully supported 21 startups with seed funding totalling $1 million.
The early-stage business incubator and impact investor’s most recent grants were made in May last year, and enterprises supported by Villgro have generated revenues of $2.2 million, touching 2 million lives.
As part of the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, Villgro also funded 11 innovative startups that have made significant contributions to the resilience of Kenya’s health system.