Home arrow SA Teaching the World arrow SA innovator named Social Entrepreneur of the Year

SA innovator named Social Entrepreneur of the Year

Wednesday, 23 July 2008

South African telecommunications innovator Rael Lissoos has been named Social Entrepreneur of the Year for his project Dabba which brings cheap mobile communication technology to townships in South Africa.

Images by Gallo Images
The awards which are aimed at promoting social entrepreneurship were hosted earlier this month by German-based Hasso Plattner Ventures, Deutsche Bank and MAN Ferrostaal, a German industrial services firm.

Lissoos' Dabba Telecoms project was honoured for the way in which it uses modern technology to bridge the digital divide.

"His company DABBA Telecoms provides the township of Orange Farm south of Johannesburg with cheap to no cost VoIP mobile communication and thus helps to overcome the disadvantages of the poor in the digital age," said a statement issued by Hasso Plattner Ventures.

"I really wasn't expecting to win, there were many great ideas presented there" said Lissoos. "So it was quite a surprise and the exposure since has been valuable."

"But man cannot survive on awards alone, so our work continues," adds Lissoos.  "We want to roll out Dabba in many more townships and eventually in other developing countries."

Dabba Telecoms is a culmination of Lissoos' ongoing work in technology and education that started with the Learning Channel Campus - an extension of the well known programme from television to the internet.

In order to see as many schools as possible benefit from the online Learning Channel content, Lissoos founded VIKO. An acronym for Video Out Knowledge In, the system allows schools to connect all their computers to one central computer that holds the relevant educational content.

Since the computers are connected via a network, the need for an internet connection is eliminated thus removing financial and technological barriers to access.

To further extend the reach of this educational material, Lissoos pioneered Magnolia Wireless - a system that would allow three or four schools to connect to the central computer by means of wireless technology.

In addition to sharing information via the Magnolia Wireless network, the technology employed also allowed the connected schools to make phone calls to each other free of charge.

From here the logical next step was Dabba - a village-based telecommunications network that would allow poorer communities to make free calls. The first network has been established in Orange Farm with more to follow in other Johannesburg townships.

Lissoos firmly believes that telecommunication companies in South Africa are over charging their customers in what he refers to as "pure greed."

"They really are charging more than necessary and it's the poorest people in the country that pay the harshest prices," he says.

"What we are doing will either encourage the telecoms companies to bring their prices down or we continue to work towards getting Dabba to reach as many people as possible. Either way the right people will benefit," adds Lissoos.

Share it!
South Africa Muti
Laak.it 24.com

Terms and Conditions of Use

COPYRIGHT South Africa - The Good News. All rights strictly reserved.

The views expressed on this website are those of www.sagoodnews.co.za and do not necessarily reflect the views of our sponsors.

No part of this website may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, or mechanical, or recording or stored in any retrieval system, without the written permission of the editor.
However, direct links to the site or articles may be used.

Should your company, or organisation wish to re-use or re-publish any content, contact the editor: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

Latest News - SA Teaching the World

Honorary MBE for Natalie du Toit

Monday, 30 September 2013

Weekly Blog

Be Glad You Don't Live in Singapore

Author: Liberty Advisory Service
Tuesday, 22 April 2014

article thumbnailWhile the cost of living in South Africa has risen significantly over the last few years with high electricity prices and fuel costs rising each month, be grateful you don’t live in Singapore which has the third most expensive energy and water costs in the world.

Travel Blog

32 weeks of great blogs

Author: Steuart Pennington
Sunday, 24 November 2013

article thumbnail 32 Weeks of Great Blogs, 32 weeks of back packing through Africa from Cape Town to Cairo, 32 weeks of free spirited adventure.  Some six months ago Valerie Bowden arrived in Cape Town, skyped me and enquired, “Hi, I’m here in Cape Town, my intention is to back pack from Cape Town to Cairo on my own, do you have any advice?”

Stories of Help

A new toy can help

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Imagine giving a toy to every under privileged child on the continent. Not just any old thing, but a brand new toy of their choice. This is the dream of Danie van Loggerenberg, founder of Toys for Africa.

Latest Videos

Coca-Cola creates rainbows to celebrate 20 years of our #RainbowNation

article thumbnail During the month of April, in celebration of “Freedom Month”, Coca-Cola has literally created rainbows. Using sunlight, water, some fancy science and a little bit of magic, rainbows were conjured up in the Joburg CBD. The rainbows were created to mark the 20th anniversary of South Africa’s democracy and the birth of the “Rainbow Nation”. 

Steuart as a Speaker

article thumbnailSteuart has done some 500 talks on South Africa's progress since 1994 and SA's prospects for the future' Click here to watch a 5 min action video.

Go to Products for booking info.

SA's Daily Fast Fact

With the recent AACSB accreditation, the University of Cape Town’s Graduate School of Business is now one of just 59 out of 13,670 business schools worldwide to be triple-crowned – schools that are accredited by the three largest and most influential business school accreditation associations namely AMBA (the Association of MBAs), European Quality Improvement System (EQUIS) and Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

See more facts and stats here

 Remarkable South Africans

Every two weeks we will be telling the story of a remarkable South African. SA GOOD NEWS is doing this in collaboration with Line Hadsbjerg, of www.remarkableworld.org.

Patrick Chamusso

article thumbnail I am a grassroots person. I am here to help the poorest of the poor people.

Join the many South Africans who are 'ledging' to make SA Better!

Read about the Invitation by clicking here...
or Join the Facebook FanPage

Connect To A Wealth Of Wisdom

  The SABLE Accelerator

A trusted knowledge network of global South Africans providing mentoring and consulting services to South African companies, entrepreneurs, and institutions seeking to fund or commercialise innovation, as well as enter, grow, and partner in worldwide markets.


Corruption Watch

Report corruption when you come across it. Our global ranking on public trust of politicians is 88/142, diversion of public funds 81/142; irregular payments and bribes 48/142; favoritism in decisions of government officials 114/142; wastefulness of government spending 69/142. Do your bit, report corruption at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or sms 45142 and join thousands of South Africans who are going to rid this country of the corruption scourge

Jobs Portal

As many of our readers, both local and international, are interested in what the job market has to offer, we have introduced a jobs portal in conjunction with  vjobs.co.za. It is our hope that this portal will meaningfully contribute to the challenges facing entrepreneurs, corporates and job seekers.

About SA The Good News

South Africa: The Good News is a news website that highlights the positive developments in South Africa.

We are an independent organisation, apolitical and with no agenda other than to source and publish good news about our beloved country. Read More...

Do you want to partner with us?

SA - The Good News has been in existence for 6 years and is read in 180 countries around the world, by some 60,000 unique users every month. We are South Africa's premiere source of good news. Our readers have proved beyond doubt that there is an appetite for what we do and that "good news" sells.

Site managed by raramuridesign