SAB holds competitions for social innovators

Social Innovation Award 2017 winner, Ntuthuko Shezi, of Grassbeef by Livestock Wealth. Photo: Jeremy Glyn

The SAB Foundation Social Innovation Awards are now open to innovators, social entrepreneurs, institutions and social enterprises with prototypes or early-stage businesses that can solve social problems.

Entrants will have the opportunity to be awarded between R200 000 and R1.3 million in investment into their innovations through the foundation’s 9th Annual Social Innovation Awards as well as 4th annual Disability Empowerment Awards. Together the awards carry the total prize money of more than R12 million.

The awards seek to empower both entrepreneurs and members of previously disadvantaged communities. “The SAB Foundation, through its Social Innovation Awards programme, aims to empower South Africa’s innovative thinkers and brightest entrepreneurial minds to develop products and services which help the country’s most vulnerable communities and at the same time empower themselves as entrepreneurs, ” says Ntando Nodada, Social Innovation Specialist at the SAB Foundation.

Launched in 2011, the Social Innovation Awards aim to encourage a culture of entrepreneurship in South Africa. “Through the SAB Foundation Social Innovation and Disability Empowerment Awards we’ve had the opportunity to work with incredible entrepreneurs who create real, lasting change in their communities. We’re excited to see the entries for 2019 and believe that this year’s innovations will bring about even bigger, positive changes in South Africa,” said Bridgit Evans, Director of the SAB Foundation.

So far the programme has invested in over 160 social entrepreneurs and their innovations with a total investment of more than R53 million. Previously award-winning innovations have improved efficiency and affordability in housing, healthcare, smallholder farming techniques, education, medical diagnostics, and cutting edge technology solutions to support people with disabilities.

Online applications close on 28 March 2019 at midday. Applications can be completed by visiting the SAB Foundation website ( – Nomaqhawe Mtebele