Backed by blockchain technology, CedarCoin will promote the reforestation and protection of Lebanon’s ancient cedar forests, the symbol of the country. One CedarCoin will be assigned to a specific tree. For each tree planted, a CedarCoin will be distributed to its investor and to the communities hosting the trees; encouraging reforestation and rewarding environmentally-conscious behaviour. CedarCoin will raise money to buy more trees and finance replanting programmes. In future, CedarCoin owners will be able to ‘adopt’ a specific tree, and see its location and GPS coordinates. CedarCoin will also be used to promote solar photovoltaic technology—allowing supporters to invest in solar panels to replace carbon-generated power. Investors will be paid in CedarCoins equal to the electricity and the income the panels generate. Live Lebanon’s mobile app, Lebanon Connect, will be expanded to enable direct contributions to crowd investing campaigns. Participants will be able to buy CedarCoins through digital wallets such as Lykke, a Swiss-based free exchange global marketplace. For as little as US$20, Lebanese expatriates will be able to digitally connect to their home country as well as to a community of investors and public and private sector organizations, and ensure that the trees that have stood as the symbol of their country for thousands of years have a healthy future.

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February 17, 2022

Bike Ambulances to improve Emergency Obstetric Care in Rural Areas

Maternal mortality and morbidity rates remain high in Cote d’Ivoire. It is estimated that more than six women out of a thousand are dying while delivering birth, while 0.7% of the women of childbearing age have fistula in the country (MICS, 2016). While the strengthening of the health system is taking place, women in the country, especially in the rural area, stay vulnerable to the high risk of maternal death and morbidity. From behavioral perspectives, the barriers that leads to the three delays–(1) deciding to seek care; (2) identifying and reaching a medical facility; (3) receiving adequate and appropriate treatment may include the following (Cichowitz et al., 2018): Factors related to the first delay: social norms (community prefers to deliver at home), limited transportation and health care services at night, and negative experience in hospitals in the past (lack of trust). Factors related to the second delay of reaching a medical facility: a lack of available transportation, long travel times, and perception of high medical costs (walking 36.5%, car 34.6%, bus 13.5%, and motorcycle 13.5% in case of a study in Tanzania). In this context, this rapid prototyping initiative seeks to develop a new low-cost, safe transportation for women to prevent maternal mortality and morbidity in rural areas, by tackling the barriers that often lead to delay of emergency obstetric care (EmOC). It also aims to collect and utilize the GPS data/information of the bike ambulances to enable regional hospitals and the government to make better decisions in providing care, utilize hospital ambulances efficiently, and enhance communication between the care-seeker and care-provider.
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