The current coronavirus pandemic has affected many economies around the world. Given its heightened vulnerability, Sudan will be no exception to this. In our efforts as 249Startups to always be part of identifying solutions and in line with the instructions regarding social distancing as prescribed by the Ministry of Health, we plan to organize the COVirtual hackathon. This hackathon is to provide tailor-made solutions to the challenges caused by the unfolding pandemic.

The first track of the hackathon will bring together experts of different fields, entrepreneurs and others with the aim of finding solutions to the challenges facing micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSME) during this pandemic. As they are the most unguarded segment of the Sudanese economy, their survival and maintenance of operations during this crisis becomes concerning. This pandemic is bound to challenge MSMEs in every direction and would result in immense employability risks.

Teams that have ready and validated MVPs. These teams will carry forward to the next phase which is the implementation phase.

Fast Track:
The fast track is for individuals, initiatives, companies, etc. that have a ready or almost-ready solution for the proposed challenge and have very specific support needs to finish implementing the solution.
During the application , Fast track applicants need to explain their solution, their team, where they are in terms of implementation and clearly define what support they need to kick-off their solution (e.g. team members, mentoring, financial support, etc.).
Work on MVP:
Teams will be given time to work on the MVP for their solution. During this time mentors will be available to help teams with any questions.  These resources will include available data sets, comprehensive contact list for validation and other useful materials.
 Fast Track Participants will be expected to customize their solution to be used during the COVID-19 pandemic. They will deliver an MVP according to the testing and validation that will be conducted by the team.

We will also provide support for the implementation of the solutions. This support will be delivered in two ways: a) Support for the implementation of the solutions themselves, b) Support for the MSMEs for which these solutions are targeting.

Fast Track - COVirtual Hackathon
We truly believe that this program will provide great support to MSMEs in securing the survival of their businesses and sustaining their livelihoods through these trying times. Nevertheless, for this program to be executed most efficiently and effectively, having the support of the country’s most prominent actors plays an integral part in this. Teams that have ready and validated MVPs. These teams will carry forward to the next phase which is the implementation phase.