Uh oh, you are using an old web browser that we no longer support. Some of this website's features may not work correctly because of this. Learn about updating to a more modern browser here.

Skip To Content

Save the Children open call for innovation partners to help more children receive vaccinations in Ethiopia and Nigeria 

23 April 2024 - Ahead of World Immunization Week, Save the Children have today launched a new $1 million initiative, funded by GSK, to empower local organisations in Ethiopia and Nigeria, and fast-track cutting-edge solutions to tackle long standing barriers which prevent children from receiving vaccinations. 
The Save the Children Immunisation Accelerator is open for applications from community-based organisations, and from local and national NGOs, research teams, social enterprises and tech companies. The most promising approaches will get the opportunity to increase their impact through financial and technical support and pilot their innovations in a live setting.  
The continent of Africa has the highest number in the world of ‘zero dose’ children – those who have never received a routine vaccination:  8.7 million children1. More than a third of these children live in Nigeria and Ethiopia, where the combined impacts of the pandemic, poverty, climate change, instability and conflict are disrupting vaccination campaigns.  
Last year Save the Children and GSK renewed their decade-long partnership for a further five years, with an investment of £15 million from GSK, enabling two new vaccination programmes in Ethiopia and Nigeria focused on reducing the number of zero dose children. 
Building on this work, the Accelerator is seeking innovators that are addressing any type of barrier to the access and utilisation of vaccines on both the supply and demand side, such as improving community engagement, streamlining logistics to increase the availability and accessibility of vaccines and strengthening data management to track vaccine coverage rates. 
Grants on offer are up to the value of $100,000 per project, alongside wrap-around support services from technical guidance to legal advice and branding assistance, tailored to address the diverse needs of varying size companies and startups.  
Samy Ahmar, Head of Health at Save the Children UK said: 

“The Save the Children Immunisation Accelerator was borne out of an understanding of the urgent necessity for locally led innovation if we are to achieve our shared vision with GSK of a world where no child suffers from a vaccine preventable disease. Through our work in Ethiopia and Nigeria we have seen how powerful collaboration can be to protect children’s health.  By identifying and nurturing new transferable innovations we hope to find unique ways to address the many barriers which prevent children from receiving vaccinations and are excited to see what ideas will come through.”

Dr Thomas Breuer, Chief Global Health Officer, GSK said:

“We’re excited to see applications open for the Immunisation Accelerator. Our partnership with Save the Children is guided by local communities, experts and stakeholders, so seeking out the local knowledge and capabilities in Ethiopia and Nigeria is fundamental in finding unique innovations that could help address the critical need for improvements to vaccination rates amongst children. We eagerly anticipate the fresh ideas that the Accelerator will bring, and Save the Children is ready to support these innovations come to fruition, to help change the trajectory for children in Nigeria, Ethiopia and beyond.”

To be considered, projects must be at the testing stage of the innovation cycle and show evidence of how they could address a priority immunisation barrier. Each will be reviewed against a robust selection criteria and consistently evaluated. 
Find out more and apply at www.stc-accelerator.org Applications are open until 24th May 2024, followed by a second call out in 2025. 

1 World Health Organization Data

Download photos here.