July 2022
Sustainably Speaking - Thoughts from the IEEE Humanitarian Activities Committee (HAC) Chair

Dear IEEE Colleagues,

This has been a fantastic month for HAC overall. Our committee has been actively working on the action plans we identified during our in-person meeting in June. One of the major focus areas for HAC this year is to continue to offer capacity building workshops to inspire, connect, train and engage IEEE volunteers in the technology based sustainable development programs offered by HAC. To achieve this goal, we are collaborating closely with IEEE Regions, IEEE societies and IEEE OUs. HAC is currently working to roll out the second edition of the IEEE HAC Global Summit later this year and more details will be shared soon. I am also glad to inform you that the HAC Projects Committee has completed the tier 1 reviews of this year’s Call for Proposals and we are in the process of completing the tier 2 decision cycle in the upcoming weeks. Thank you to all the applicants for their participation and cooperation.
It was wonderful to have met IEEE President Dr. Rai Liu and IEEE president-elect Dr. Saifur Rahman at the recent IEEE Board series. I was delighted to share HAC’s record breaking growth, our global strategy and the process improvements in recent years to maximize the impact of HAC/SIGHT projects. We deeply appreciate the encouragement and support from them towards the goals of IEEE humanitarian activities.   
We are continuing to strengthen our collaborations with IEEE Regions. Last month, I was delighted to meet with several regional directors to explore joint programs with HAC. Based on our ongoing engagement, we will continue to rollout joint programs across all ten Regions. On a related note, we are thrilled to have received seven project proposals from our joint call with Region 8 and received 9 project proposals from our joint call with SPS and we look forward to reviewing and providing feedback to those applicants. HAC will be offering capacity building workshops at the upcoming Region 8 SYP congress in Tunis, Tunisia and at the IEEE Region 10 SYPW congress in Jeju island, South Korea.

On the Society partnership front, we are excited to continue our strong collaboration with the IEEE Electron Devices Society (EDS). HAC jointly partnered with EDS and offered a keynote presentation and a HAC capacity building workshop at the recently concluded IEEE Latin American Electron Devices Conference 2022 in Puebla, Mexico. These programs were well received by the participants and inspired EDS members across Latin America to learn about the portfolio of global programs offered by HAC. It was amazing to meet SIGHT volunteers across Region 9 from Colombia, Peru, Argentina, Mexico and Guatemala during the conference. During the next few months we will be closely collaborating with these key stakeholders to support programs that will benefit their local communities.

HAC is also delighted with our strong ongoing programs with Member and Geographic Activities (MGA) and are delighted to offer workshops and keynote presentations in the upcoming IEEE WIE International Leadership Summit 2022 taking place in India. We are also looking forward to collaborating with IEEE Smart Village and will be contributing to the Power Africa Conference in Rwanda.

HAC will be publishing the Second Quarterly Report for 2022 in the coming weeks. This report will highlight the key milestones, collaborations and upcoming opportunities for HAC/SIGHT members. This report also serves as a mechanism to showcase the breadth and width of humanitarian activities driven by IEEE volunteers globally.

Thank you all for your active participation in the HAC/SIGHT programs.

Stay safe and healthy,
Sampathkumar Veeraraghavan
2021 - 2022 IEEE HAC Chair

Thoughts from the IEEE Special Interest Group on Humanitarian Technology (SIGHT) Chair

Dear Esteemed SIGHT Members,

It gives me great pleasure to once again welcome you to this edition of our newsletter. It is with great pleasure that we enter the second phase of the year during this month. Our activities for the last six months have seen us make tremendous achievements while also finding sustainable solutions to whatever challenges our communities face.

It is therefore my responsibility to all of us that we double our efforts in generating all the possible solutions that we can to ensure that our response to whatever challenges our communities face is satisfactory and above all conclusively effective. In line with this spirit, I call upon all of us to work harder while being smarter in resolving all the global issues while using innovative technology strategies to advance the humanitarian aspects of our societies.

I would also sincerely thank all those members who responded to recent SPS & HAC calls for proposals. Your submissions are going to be reviewed accordingly by the review committee and once this process is completed, you will be provided with feedback.

Additionally, members are welcome to make nominations for the annual IEEE SIGHT Awards to recognize outstanding SIGHT groups which have demonstrated the SIGHT vision, goals and objectives especially in impacting various communities. The nominations will be open 1 - 30 September 2022.

As I wish all great success in whatever we do, I welcome all of us to have great reading of our newsletter.

Yours sincerely,
Lwanga Herbert
2021 - 2022 IEEE SIGHT Chair


2022 IEEE SIGHT Awards

IEEE SIGHT will be accepting nominations for the annual IEEE SIGHT Awards from 1 - 30 September. The IEEE SIGHT Volunteer of the Year and the IEEE SIGHT Group of the Year Awards were established by the IEEE SIGHT Steering Committee (SSC) in 2019 to recognize individuals and SIGHT Groups that have made outstanding contributions to IEEE SIGHT and their local community. Please consider who you could nominate for either Award!

*New in 2022* This year, there will be two recipients of the SIGHT Group of the Year Award as it will have two categories – one for Student Branch SIGHT Groups and one for all other types of SIGHT Groups.

IEEE HAC Webinar: Interview with Dr. Melania Alvarez

IEEE HAC Education Chair, Dr Rebab Ward interviews Dr. Melania Alvarez. This webinar aims to educate volunteers about how to carry out humanitarian work with underrepresented minorities. It details how best to include the differences in cultural and social aspects. The video will be uploaded here soon.


Calling all Innovators to Enter the 2022 IEEE Connecting the Unconnected Challenge!

IEEE Connecting the Unconnected Challenge

EPICS (Engineering Projects in Community Service) in IEEE is launching a competition to challenge university students from all over the world to use their engineering skills to help solve accessibility issues within their communities. Proposals should identify an accessibility problem in the local community, and detail how the student team will attempt to solve the problem using engineering and technology skills. Student teams can win US$5,000-US$10,000 to build their prototype or solution!

Click here for more information on the competition and how to submit a proposal.


The IEEE International Humanitarian Technology Conference (IHTC)

IHTC is a multi-regional conference series rotating between R7 (Canada), R8 (Africa, Europe and Middle East), and R9 (Latin America and Caribbean). This year, IEEE IHTC will be a virtual event held from 2 - 4 December. IEEE members from all IEEE Regions are invited to submit a poster presentation or full paper presentation (proof of concept and mature results). The deadline for submission is 4 September; for more information, visit the IHTC website. The conference will also host a video competition for IEEE Student Branches and SIGHT Groups. Submit a video showcasing your technical activities and projects and win a US$500 prize! The deadline to submit a video is 31 October 2022. For more information, contact [email protected].


IEEE Empower a Billion Lives - Opportunity to Submit a Full Proposal

IEEE Empower a Billion Lives (EBL), an initiative of the IEEE Power Electronics Society (PELS), is a global competition aimed at fostering innovation to develop solutions to electricity access. Solutions are expected to be scalable, regionally relevant, holistic, and leverage 21st-century technologies with exponentially declining prices. SIGHT Groups and IEEE members working in this area interested in joining the competition must submit a full proposal by 1 August. See the EBL website for an instructional webinar on guidelines, a template for the full proposal, and the link to start your entry.


Charging Up 2.0

In 2021, a team of student volunteers from the IEEE SIGHT Group and IEEE Power and Energy Society (PES) Chapter of Viswajyothi College of Engineering and Technology (VJCET) in Kerala undertook a project in partnership with a local tribal settlement colony. The village school had approximately 800 students but was not prepared to transition teaching to an online mode during the COVID-19 pandemic, with one of the main challenges being a lack of electricity. The team started by providing an off-grid solar power system, and then added a laptop, project, printer, and internet connectivity to allow students to connect to online resources during the pandemic and in the future. In addition to a schedule of regular follow-ups, the team members also held a workshop for people from the community to train them in the use and basic maintenance of the system to ensure the project’s sustainability.

Welcome to the newest SIGHT Groups!

- College of Engineering Adoor SB SIGHT - India (Kerala Section), Region 10


Important Dates & Upcoming Virtual Events

Visit the HAC/SIGHT calendar for more humanitarian technology events and activities (all virtual for now).



Your donation of any amount to the IEEE SIGHT fund of the IEEE Foundation will help form the IEEE sustainable development leaders of the future and incubate projects that support IEEE’s mission of advancing technology for the benefit of humanity in communities around the globe.

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See the free HAC/SIGHT resources on the IEEE Learning Network (ILN) and SIGHT website to equip participants with a basic understanding of humanitarian technology and sustainable development topics.


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