Two Kenyan non-profit organizations, Jacaranda Health and EIDU, have been selected to participate in Google's inaugural Generative AI Cohort program.

This prestigious program offers a unique opportunity for these organizations to leverage cutting-edge AI technology to tackle critical social issues in Africa.

The six-month program will provide Jacaranda Health and EIDU with access to over $20 million (Sh2.6 billion) in funding to support their development of high-impact generative AI applications.

Generative AI is a subfield of artificial intelligence focused on creating new content, such as text, images, or code.

Dorothy Ooko, Head of Communications and Public Affairs at Google Africa said that Generative AI has the potential to empower social impact teams to enhance productivity, creativity and efficacy withing their communities.

"Generative AI can empower social impact teams to be more productive, creative and effective in serving their communities," Ooko stated.

"We look forward to helping the chosen organisations harness the potential of this technology to tackle some of the continent's most pressing challenges."

Jacaranda Health is a prime example of this potential. The organization is working on expanding access to digital health services for underserved mothers in Africa.

They will utilize generative AI with Natural Language Processing (NLP) trained specifically for African languages to bridge the communication gap and empower mothers with vital health information.

Similarly, EIDU is using generative AI to address the educational needs of low- and middle-income countries.

Their innovative approach involves creating personalized tutors through generative AI, providing students with tailored digital learning experiences.

The Google Generative AI Cohort program is not limited to Africa. It also includes participants from the United States, the United Kingdom, France, and Germany.

This global initiative highlights the immense potential of AI technology to address social challenges on a broad scale.

While AI offers significant advantages such as faster task completion, a recent survey revealed that nearly half of organizations lack the resources to effectively implement this technology.

This highlights the critical role initiatives like Google's program play in bridging the knowledge and funding gap for impactful AI development.

Despite the clear benefits of AI, concerns remain regarding potential job displacement due to automation.

Jobs like data entry, travel booking, and customer service may be increasingly automated, raising questions about the future of work.

Overall, Google's Generative AI Cohort program presents a promising opportunity for Kenya and other participating nations to harness the power of AI for positive social change.

As AI continues to evolve, navigating the potential benefits and drawbacks will be crucial in ensuring a future where technology empowers rather than displaces.