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"Insider" web stories of East African start-ups with business ideas for social change in Kenya, Rwanda, and Tanzania.
"Insider" web stories of East African start-ups with business ideas for social change in Kenya, Rwanda, and Tanzania.
103 backers pledged $8,050 to help bring this project to life.

Recent updates

Ten NEW Stories for Web and Broadcast.

Dear Inventor lovers,

I hope your summer was green and your fall will be invigorating.

Your support for young inventors' stories three years ago made editing them possible. We shot with 12 startups, edited ten stories, and began working with collaborators.

==>   Since last January, we've been busy, and It's all at YWI's last campaign page. I was happy to get an email this morning from Rwandan animation artist Sam Zizinga, who said: 

To develop cartoon TV show which I called Joriji, I wish we should be in touch after all support and assist you provided, still count on you to extent the connection. If all work according to the plan in October we will reveal first part of 15min long, divided into 3 episodes

Sam won "best entrepreneur" in a national TV show, fresh out of college last year, and we shot and edited this video with him last January. (He's shy about his English, and seeks better animation tools.)

2. We shot five lively NEW profiles last winter, redesigned our website, built a talented team, worked with three new collaborators and found cameramen and producers in Kenya, Tanzania and Rwanda. It's all here at our final crowd funding campaign page.

I leave for Africa in four days to develop more partnerships for ten weeks.

3. Our long-term stories of inventors Jodie Wu and Bernard Kiwia have taken new turns; we are editing those shorts now with a feature doc friend and producer, Lucia Small. We ask for your help finally, to finish ten stories, and seek sustainable broadcast partners.

It's all at YWI's new campaign page.

4. Our stories will live on the web and enter global festivals. With help from Documentary Educational Resources (all donations are tax deductible!), we will approach sustainable funders to broadcast our stories in the US and Africa. 

5. Your help now will position us for ongoing support for many channels. We have cool perks, from video updates to t-shirts to solar lights that power phones (perfect for fall BBQs), to art made from trash. Every dollar and every donor gets us closer.

Will you help us edit these stories and spread the word? Here are some tweets, to make it easy:

  • see's art from trash video Help finish stories, bdcst. #invention #TED Global #Africanart
  • Finish 10 stories for Young World Inventors: Making Invention Contagious # invention #Africa #enterprise
  • @ KenyaStove aims to save lives (and forests). Spread the word at #Africa #invention @ywinventors

Grateful for your advice and support -- Diane and the YWI Team | Inventors who Inspire. Stories that Empower. Learning from Africa.

new Huffington Post article on YWI!

The real question is: Can Storytelling Affect Change? Loud shoutout to our new backers and Joseph Peterson for the fine Huffington Post article, who found us on a tweet. 

Please share to bring us home in 3 days! Perhaps you'd like a tote bag, T-shirt, corn sheller, patio solar light that charges a phone? Or you want to sponsor the music track from (the coolest) Just a Band, get cool PR as a corporate sponsor? 

 From my first week in Rwanda, a glimpse of a girl -- clear eyed, bold, ready to express her promise. 

CEO of HeHe, Ltd. Clarisse Iribagiza might be teaching her how to program a cellphone in three years. Clarisse just received the highest enterprise award from First Lady Kagame for just that. Find out more at YWI Seed Invention -

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FUN video & new MAKE article!

Dear 2011 backers of YWI: I am forever grateful for your support that made it possible to complete our first stories.

Young World Inventors’ stories and insights continue, with 3 days to fund our new Kickstarter .  Join us to launch dozens of stories with partners on a dedicated site!

Since 2011, we have researched and shot 60+ hours of footage, won 9K views of first videos, established followings on social media, found media partners, and are now ready to cover three new startup stories and update others, to edit two dozen+ stories for a new interactive site by winter.  Check our KS page. []]

See the wrap around story on Bernard Kiwia at E4C and todays' new post at Make: Magazine.  There's another back story on HeHe, Ltd. at the new Medium, which refers to videos not yet public.

Check out this fun video on how to make a movement by Derek Sivers... It's not about the leader of a movement, but "If you really care about starting a movement, have the courage to follow and show others how to follow!" 

In truth, it's about momentum and sharing!  Help us REACH OUT- for example: @ynginventors makes hi/lo tech stories of #African #innovators, linx mentors, investrs & brodcstrs!   RT by 8/29!

P.S.  Yesterday I donated to KS film that went from 33% funding to 103% funding (of $200K!) in the past SIX days.  Working together, we can make our goal. Will you join us?

Need Votes for "HeHe Is Serious" @Focus Forward Films!

I am thankful for all who helped us leap forward last fall. Our latest video, "HeHe Is Serious Business," is ready for votes -- up to ten times per day per computer!  

Will you help us become an Audience Favorite at (We crave  viral activity.) This global competition features 100+ global storytellers and $200,000 in prize money. 

Our 3 min. video, "HeHe is Serious Business!,”  needs your VOTE to get thousands more! [Be sure cookies are enabled. Mobiles may not register votes, so use a computer. VOTE tab is under the 'embed' on the screen. If you don’t see 'VOTE', select Flash player (not HTML5).]

Then, will you share with friends, on FB, twitter, email by Dec. 20? needs your help to catalyze invention across continents.
[tweet to friends ==> ]

CEO Clarisse Iribagiza says of HeHe’s trials and triumphs: "We are living the Rwandan dream...nothing is impossible." Last summer, two years after launch, HeHe won $50K US in competition; then Clarisse came to the US as a guest of Secretary Hillary Clinton. We'll continue to follow the team's challenges.

Please *Like* us on Facebook: YWI and and follow/RT on twitter: @ynginventors. More videos live at Youtube: youngworldinventors.

Thanks for the love!

PS  Contact me for the East Africa Flyer article about me & YWI, published in Nairobi. (can't upload PDFs here).  Let me know if you want a press packet, DVD, or have questions!

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Cheers for Traction: Thanks to your support of our Kickstarter campaign ($8K) last year, we edited ten videos of three women-run tech startups in East Africa. 

~ Last June our project became a finalist (only 16 finalists of 300 applicant) for the Tribeca New Media Fund. The director told me to resubmit for funding, since the panel loved stories of African women innovators. Only six finalists were funded (at $50K-$100). 

~ YWI's new video, HeHe is Serious Business (pwd:ywi) is now a semifinalist in the Focus Forward Films competition! Check out the young team who are IT rock stars in Rwanda. 

~ On Nov. 1, our video goes public; we need votes to become an audience favorite! Cash winners for five prizes ($200K) will be announced at the Sundance film festival in January. 

~ Last week a V.P. for programming at a Chicago TV station told me that she wants to collaborate on stories of African inventiveness. An interested investor is in the wings, with a dozen other stories of successful entrepreneurs throughout Africa. 

~ Next week I will meet with potential funder/partners in Portland, OR who are interested in young inventors. YWI is collaborating with E4C (Engineering for Change) to distribute stories to 11,000 members worldwide.  Our Nairobi producer will shoot a short video in Tanzania soon.

~ I am talking with broadcaster, educators and funders of the GirlHub project in Rwanda. The HeHe video above tells a bit of the story. An article about our YWI project and startups appears in October's East African Flyer, a new magazine for NGOs published in Nairobi. I will post a PDF here as soon as I get one. 

~ YWI will include 1) a participatory platform for serial videos, with forums about innovative startups in East Africa and 2) pilot projects in Rwanda and Tanzania to repurpose content we've shot for radio and TV. [If the Chicago collaboration happens, we could have docu shorts on US TV as well as websites.] Our budget is $147K (phase one: 20 stories and platform). More ambitious plans for a mobile game on invention and mobile surveys of user audiences are on the horizon.

Will you help us get votes for our video on FFF?  Marketing brainstorms are welcome.            Gratefully ~ Diane for

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