The United Nations Children’s Fund together with Telekom Foundation for Macedonia today issued an open call inviting young innovators to submit ideas for digital solutions to remove barriers that children and young people with disabilities face in education and community life. Under the title “Youth Challenge – Digital Inclusion” – the national call for applications is part of the Generation Unlimited Youth Challenge 2019/20 taking place in over 40 countries worldwide.
“The age of adolescence is the best time for creative thinking and innovation. This is also the best age to learn how to solve problems and care for others. We would like to harness the power of adolescence and are excited to see how young innovators will engage and tackle some of the biggest challenges facing their generation - applying digital knowledge for equitable society in which everyone participates in every aspect of community life without barriers,” said Patrizia Di Giovanni, UNICEF Representative.
The best ten teams - which should include at least one person with a disability - will be invited to a design thinking workshop to develop their ideas further in December 2019. Following these workshops, the five most promising ideas from will be selected and awarded USD 1,000 each in funding and provided with support. The teams will work under the mentorship of experts on Internet of Things, engineers, marketing and IT specialists from Makedonski Telekom.
“One of the biggest challenges of the digital society is decreasing the digital gap and creating equal opportunities for all, especially for the vulnerable groups, such as children and young people with disabilities. As digital transformation stakeholders, our task is to create conditions and undertake initiatives, but also to include young people in co-creation of equitable digital society,” - said Nikola Ljusev, President of Foundation Telekom for Macedonia.
In June 2020, the final two most promising solutions from the country will be submitted to a global judging process. These projects will have the chance to receive further funding of up to $20,000, along with a tailored global incubation programme from Generation Unlimited partners to support them to scale.
The UNICEF and Telekom Foundation for Macedonia “Youth Challenge – Digital Inclusion” is being implemented with SmartUp and Macedonian Scotts Association who will be reaching out to young people over the coming weeks before the call closes on 22 November 2019.
To find out more about Generation Unlimited visit https://www.genunlimited.mk/
For more information, please contact:
Foundation Telekom for Macedonia, Lea Lipsha, tel: +389 23242506, e-mail FoundationTelekomforMacedonia@telekom.mk
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.mk.