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Giraffe secures funding from Unicef innovation fund

Giraffe has received grant funding from Unicef”s innovation fund and will utilise the funding to empower South Africa’s youth to become employable.

Founded in 2015, Giraffe is a South African mobile job matching platform that aims to reduce unemployment in emerging markets by enabling job seekers to easily create CV via cellphone for free. In addition, the platform allows users to connect with relevant job opportunities available in their area.

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Giraffe has closed a grant funding round from Unicef’s innovation fund

The additional funding will enable Giraff to develop a jobseeker content portal that can enable young individuals to up skill themselves, therefore, increasing their employability. The platform content created will be based on data gathered from Giraffe’s extensive labour data market which showcases what skills are in demand.

By closing the loop and addressing the skills gap, Giraffe believes that its solution will create more impact and more young people will be absorbed into the workforce. Giraffe also plans to use Unicef’s support to evolve its matching algorithm, making large parts of it open source for other organisations to use across the globe.

Cecilia Chapiro, Investment and Portfolio Adviser at UNICEF Innovation Fund comments on the allocation of the funds.

“The UNICEF Innovation Fund welcomes Giraffe to our portfolio of startups bridging learning and connectivity gaps towards employability,” said Cecilia Chapiro, Investment and Portfolio Adviser at UNICEF Innovation Fund.”

Giraffe’s immediate objective is to navigate the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Indeed, addressing the economic impact of the pandemic and associated job losses are a key focus of the company’s efforts. UNICEF’s support comes at a critical time when job seekers need the most support.

Commenting on the partnership, Giraffe CEO Anish Shivdasani says, “We are truly honoured to be working with UNICEF to evolve our job matching platform as we move into our next stage of growth. The education and employment of the youth- especially in Africa- are critical to ensure inclusive growth, reduce poverty and inequality, and pave the way towards a world that is more just for all.”

Focusing on employment

Giraffe has created a platform that connects users with employment opportunities using matching algorithms to identify and contact relevant potential candidates. All of the selected candidates are screened for the job and prompted to submit a voice note motivating why they are suitable for the job.

Employers utilising the platform to find potential candidates can easily access these motivational voice notes via the dashboard available and select a suitable candidate for the job on offer. Giraffe has created a platform that seamlessly automates the process of recruitment, saving both recruiters and job seekers time whilst enabling employers to quickly find the best candidate.

Compared to other job portals, Giraffe focuses on entry and medium-skilled roles, which are relevant to the South African youth.

Addressing the issues

Giraffe’s founders, Anish Shivdasani and Shafin Anwarsha- established the company to address South Africa’s disastrous youth unemployment problem.

Unemployment rates in South Africa are around 40%, with youth unemployment at around 50%. The long terms effects of a high level of unemployment among the youth could result in lifelong poverty extending into the future generations. Solving youth unemployment is therefore critical to reduce poverty and inequality.

Whilst South Africa’s unemployment problems relate primarily to the legacy of apartheid and the country’s poor economic growth rate, access, and visibility to opportunities are also major issues. By using mobile technology and matching algorithms, Giraffe hopes to improve job seekers’ access and visibility to opportunities.

Since launching, Giraffe has attracted over one-million job seekers with thousands of businesses (both small and large scale) using the platform to recruit staff.

However, Giraffe’s founders have noted that one of the main issues in the youth’s employability is the lack of education and skills. The additional funding will assist the company to bridge the existing gap and provide South Africans with the opportunity to become employed.

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Featured image: Giraffe’s founders, Anish Shivdasani and Shafin Anwarsha (Supplied)

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