April 20, 2016
Written by Isabelle Bourgeault-Tassé
This post originally appeared on The MasterCard Foundation website. Reposted with permission.
“Oluwatoni is from Nigeria, I’m from South Africa. These are countries that do not have amicable political relations,” laughs Maputi Botlhole. “To have people from these different parts of the continent collaborate, we believe that it speaks to the many enriching relationships that Africans can form to drive innovation and transcend turbulent political relations.”
Maputi Botlhole and Oluwatoni Fuwape are the creators of CondomCraze, an app that aims to educate, promote and destigmatize conversations about safe sex, especially among young people. And it’s an app that is increasingly gaining steam, with 1,500 users in its first month, most of them based across the United States, Latin America and Africa. CondomCraze was also recently recognized by USAID’s AIDSFree Project with mention on both the USAID website and Twitter channel, as well as by Ubuntu’s CEO Jacob Lief.
Maputi and Oluwatoni met as students at West Virginia University, where Maputi studied as a MasterCard Foundation Scholar as part of its partnership with the African Leadership Academy. As seniors, Maputi (Biometric Systems) and Oluwatoni (Electrical Engineering and Computer Science) designed a prototype of a health kiosk that would provide screening and diagnostic services to people from low-income communities who often lack access to quality healthcare. This meeting of minds was the first step in a budding partnership that has seen them claim their voice as young African innovators.