R labs presentation-oct12



RLabs overview presentation

Transcript of R labs presentation-oct12

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RLabs makes a local impact but is a global movement that provides innovative solutions to address various complex

problems. It creates an environment where people are empowered to

make a difference in the lives of others.

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The Journey of RLabsThe journey of RLabs has always been one of the impossible.

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• The entire journey and our reason for doing what we do is always about …..

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The LandscapeIn Cape Town we have beautiful beaches, mountains and views…

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The Landscape… then just a few km’s away we are faced with problems which lead our community to difficult social circumstances.

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The LandscapeOur community was faced with an impossible environment where the community needed one thing above all else…..

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The LandscapeHope. There is nothing worse than looking into someone eyes and seeing no HOPE!

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“A Community in Tension is where the wellbeing of Citizens are being threatened”

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RLabs understood when we started that we worked in an environment where people were vulnerable. We identified local champions who were our change agents in the community. Embracing its context was vital and we are always about doing things in context.


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Humble Beginnings – 1st Partner

This is a pic of our first computer borrowed to us by our local partner Impact Direct. A community based NGO. We used one of their rooms and dial-up connection in 2007.

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First Champions – 2nd PartnerWe partnered with CPUT to use their computer lab. And these are our first group of champions. Most of them are still with RLabs today and make up the management team.

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Reconstructing Citizens

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Reconstructing Communities

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ReconstructedYoung people who have been involved in drugs, gangsterism or any other social ills .

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Birth of Mom2.0After training the first group at CPUT, we then acquired a few more computers and upgraded to ADSL connectivity. The original champions now became the facilitators and trained the women in the community. Called them Mom2.0. The same women they used to disempower they were now empowering.

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More courses…As interest from the community grew so did RLabs. We received a donation of laptops and expanded our training to include Social Media for Teens, Senior Mobile Sessions, Mom3.0, The Reconstructed and Social Media for Social Change courses.

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RLabs components6 components of RLabs. Community well-being is always in the core of what we do at RLabs.

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Since we started we have trained over 7,000 people in our academy and over 4,000 people through other forms of training. All the courses offered are free of charge to the community. They include: Digital and New Media, Geeky Moms, Introduction to Social Media, Entrepreneurship, Social Entrepreneurship, Project Management, Events Management, Web Development, Online Safety & Security, PR & Marketing, Photography Principles, Photo Editing


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Academy Empowerment is fundamental in any community driven activity. More so in a living lab context.

Enable the community members and champions to empower others and to create their own innovations

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Play & Learn ApproachEquipping the team with the skills needed in the Living Lab environment

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Don’t be afraidDare to be different and not to be afraid of trying something new. Stand out from the rest and don’t be afraid to be the first to try something.

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# Social Media Trainers: +2,000

# Trained in Social Media: +7,000

# of Mobile Subscribers: +2,900,000

# of Interactions: +35,000,000

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57 jobs direct and 168 indirect, 226 families reached and 1100+

lives impacted. 10 startup businesses created with

community members

Economic Development

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Internships & Employment

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Offer 5 bursaries per year for tertiary education, 93% of RLABS team who were

school leavers returned to complete matric, 100+ accessed University

certificates, 7044 community members trained through academy (unemployed,

single moms, youth, elderly), partner with 18 universities


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2.9mil people reached through mobile support services in SA, areas such as

substance abuse, HIV/AIDS, Family, life skills, career guidance. Also work with

variety of NGOs and schools doing capacity building

Social Development

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DAS – Online Support Services

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World BankDFIDMxit




University of Southampton

Vodacom Foundation



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Johannesburg Univeristy

NMMUAalto UniversityFinnish Foreign

MinistryPlan International



Amsterdam UniversityKHAYENET

City MissionCMESBCA

1% ClubGivenGain

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Using innovation to transform communitiesRLabs is powered by Innovation.

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Innovation and creativity is what fuels and drives RLabs and its growth.

Innovation Incubator

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Using InnovationAn example of our first innovation that was birthed in RLabs. Because the first group of champions we trained in Social Media for Social Change were all ex-drug addicts, gang members, gang bosses who suffered from some addiction or social ill. When we asked the community what is the tension (problem) drugs was high on the priority list. The community then asked if there was a way to use technology and to help their own community at the same time.

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An online drug advice support platform was formed called: JamiiX is a web-based enterprise platform that allows organisations to engage with their users on various instant messaging and mobile chat platforms. It is currently mostly used by non-profits and development agencies who use JamiIX to provide low-cost communication between people in need and social service organisations.

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She’s the Geek

Monique Theron Ross: was an ex-drug addict and suicidal just 4 years ago. She was addicted to substances and now she is addicted to technology and she’s a real geek

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She’s the Geek

She’s the Geek: A startup by two local women who provides technology tips, reviews, consulting, insights and empowerment from a woman’s perspective. A social website is being developed to support the She’s The Geek enterprise. Winner of SA blog awards for Best Science and Technology Blog in 2010.

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Terence Hendricks

Terence Hendricks was unemployed for 5-6 years. When asked what the biggest problem in his community was he said unemployment. And if you know a problem and have 5-6 years experience in industry you will be called an expert and therefore be a consultant. Now he is an Entrepreneur and founder of Uusi.

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Uusi – Your New Beginning

Uusi: An innovative jobs, business and education mobile social network matching people with empowerment opportunities.

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Uusi – Your New Beginning

It has been dubbed “The Poor-man’s LinkedIn” with a strong focus on the emerging markets. Already have thousands of active users and have a partnership agreement with, Africa’s largest mobile social network, Mxit. And signed up its first international partner: Nigeria’s largest job portal.

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Scalability is an important component of the RLabs. Therefore all the start-ups should have a social impact, be sustainable/have a business model and show potential for growth (scale).

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Sustainability is key to the work that RLabs does especially when its impacting the lives of the community. Sustainability is to ensure through a hybrid model of business development and funding (Currently 70% of our income is self generated).

Business Development

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Enable the community members and champions to empower others and to create their own innovations.

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EG. Social Media Coverage, Social Media Policy Development and Consulting Services and Training to organisations, businesses or institutions

Social Media Events

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RLabs currently works with 18 different universities globally. When researches use our resources they must joint publish and if they have funding they pay for some of our services.

Research Institute

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Research Institute

Research – 1. Conducting research through and about Rlabs2. Research papers- List of peer reviewed journal and conference papers, and RLabs case studies

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RLabs offer franchisees the following: Eg.Be part of an award winning brand with international reputation, Opportunity to be part of growing and global network, Training in its Multi-Dimension approach to Innovation (Social Reconstruction, Mentorship, Capacity Building, Research & Development, Champion Breeding, Innovation Academy, Innovation Incubator, Business Development, Innovation Leadership and Management)

Social Franchising

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RLabs South Africa

South Africa - 2010: Grown from 8 to …

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RLabs South AfricaSouth Africa - 2011: …28

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RLabs South AfricaSouth Africa - 2012: …42

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RLabs Portugal

Porto, Portugal


University of


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RLabs Nigeria

Owerri, Nigeria

Partner: Youth for Technology

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RLabs Namibia

Windhoek, Namibia

Partner: NBIC

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RLabs Malaysia


Partner: Youth Works Asia

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RLabs Tanzania


Partner: Tumani University and Neema Crafts (for people with disabilities)

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RLabs Finalnd

Helsinki, Finland


Aalto University

Signing MOU

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New partnership – signing MOU

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RLabsSierra Leone and Pakistan

New partnership – Youth Economic Empowerment and Plan International

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RLabs being all inclusive and works with all generations

All inclusive…our older champions…… champions, regardless of age

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A Worldwide RevolutionRLabs making a local impact and being a global movement. A social revolution

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