While talking to Startup Guide Pakistan, Hassan Bin Rizwan Founder of SABAQ elaborated on what motivated him to start his venture and how social entrepreneurship plays an important role in helping him grow.
Tell us about yourself and your social enterprise.
I co-founded SABAQ in 2015. My professional background has been in engineering, product R&D and management. SABAQ is an award-winning education technology company on a mission to make learning fun. We turn rigorous, curriculum-aligned, primary-grades lessons into a fun and engaging digital world that ignites kids’ passion for learning. Our core belief is that technology has the power to unlock the genius inside every child. Over the last 3 years, SABAQ has helped over 75,000 students in 500+ school improve their learning outcomes.
How did the idea come about and how has it evolved since you started out?
The problem we set out to solve was that of millions of children staying out of school or dropping out before reaching grade 6. The key reason for this is poor learning conditions; because the learning resources aren’t exciting; the teachers fail to captivate the students’ imagination and the children remain unengaged. The result? They fall behind their grade-level targets and end up dropping out. When we first started out, we took inspiration from Khan Academy. Our product has evolved quite a bit since then. We use human-centered design principles to research, build and test our product. Working with young kids and teachers, we have learned as to how children learn and have tried to tailor our apps to make them more engaging, deliver even better results. Now we are attempting to tackle a personalized learning system so we can cater to specific and unique needs of each student.
What is your take on social entrepreneurship?
Entrepreneurship is all about creating value in unique ways. Social entrepreneurship attempts to create value for the basic social services like health, education, safety, security etc. Traditionally, social services were considered too big a challenge for private enterprises to solve and were left alone for the govt. to tackle. In the recent timtes, technology has allowed innovative minds to tackle these big problems by leveraging the power of technology. Today, several education, health and safety services companies are providing value to the masses by scaling their innovations. I believe the future will see many more startups tackling problems like illiteracy, malnutrition, public health, transportation etc. in efficient, innovative and scalable ways.