MTN Uganda has selected a Medical practitioner, Dr. Moses Ssemusu as one of the 100 participants in the inaugural MTN Foundation youth skilling program that seeks to solve challenges in society through innovations.
Dr. Ssemusu with skills in clinical research wants to use technology to ensure the availability of blood all year-round. In his application for the program, he attached a proposal to solve the challenge of limited blood reserves in the country. The proposal was influenced by the incessant women mortality rate at delivery as well as accident victims.
Dr. Ssemusu joined the MTN Foundation youth skilling program after his long-time friend from university shared an advertisement about the program on Facebook. “I saw the advert for the MTN Foundation Youth Skilling program on Facebook after my former roommate at University shared it on his timeline for interested parties. Then I submitted my proposal and thankfully joined the program,” he narrated.
Dr. Ssemusu’s proposal rallied around a plan to address the challenge of limited blood in hospitals by leveraging technology through geographical information systems to map out locations of potential blood donors and donation centers.
“My idea was to have a regular volunteer blood donor program. I thought of it because childbirth was becoming a matter of life and death in Uganda given that about 16 mothers and more die from preventable causes stemming from excessive bleeding during delivery. My idea hopes to ensure there is blood all year round in blood banks across the country,” explains Dr. Ssemusu.
He goes on to add that “Those that are eligible to donate blood will be doing it on their birthdays and it will be done via a digital platform. They will be able to flag off a blood bank and get pre-directed to a donation center; either physical or a mobile one to be able to donate blood. The idea rides on the grounds that every day is someone’s birthday so that will ensure quick and real-time notification for eligible donors whenever they have to donate blood.”
Having previously worked for a non-government organization driving advocacy, Dr. Ssemusu hopes to take the front wheel in his quest to solve this challenge and hopes that the MTN program would be instrumental to his cause. With the goal to realize this dream, he hopes to acquire the necessary skills that would drive him closer to its realization.
Dr. Ssemusu is part of the twin cohort of the first edition of the MTN Youth Skilling program which graduated its first cohort mid last year —over 60 youth successfully graduated having attained digital and technical skills from the program.
According to Dr. Ssemusu, the 12 weeks spent at the program, enabled him to attain computer skills within the first phase of the training which focuses mainly on the international computer driving license (ICDL).
“I have learned to use collaborative tools for learning. Previously, I had very limited knowledge of the full potential usage of a computer but now I have discovered so many new things and tricks of productively using a computer. I have learned time management and have been tested on resilience. I have also greatly improved at teamwork and knowledge sharing with teammates,” he says.
On how the training is helping him attain his goal of an abundant pool of blood donation, he said he has been enlightened.
“My mind has been opened by this program. I have gained insight into the possibilities of achieving my dream of the volunteer blood donor program. The training has directed my focus to what issues I should be working on step by step,” he explains.
Dr. Ssemusu also hopes to become a business leader and he said he will utilize the skills he has attained from the program to carry out extensive research which will be pivotal to his entrepreneurial ambitions.