New partnership between UNICEF and the Foundation TELEKOM for Macedonia
The partnership will support new initiatives for children and young people to tackle some of the biggest challenges facing their generation
Skopje, 5 May 2022 –The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the Foundation Telekom for Macedonia are further expending their multi-year partnership with new initiatives for children and young people to tackle some of the biggest challenges facing their generation and promote digital solutions for quality and inclusive education.
The partnership will support: digital education and Eduino web platform; communication initiatives led by youth to address barriers that allow cyberbullying and hate speech to persist in social media, and a new youth challenge focusing on digital solutions for climate action.
UNICEF together with the Telekom Foundation for Macedonia will launch the extended partnership with an open call inviting young innovators to submit ideas for digital solutions to address climate change. Under the title “Climate Tech”, the national call for applications is part of the Generation Unlimited Youth Challenge taking place in over 40 countries worldwide.
“Through this partnership we encourage co-creation with young people to find innovative solutions to the challenges they face every day. Young people are deeply concerned with climate change and are fully capable of being part of the solution. This challenge creates a space for them to use their creativity and lead their solutions, connect with entrepreneurship opportunities and become catalysts of positive change in their local communities and broader,” said Patrizia DiGiovanni UNICEF Representative.
"Technology is a powerful tool especially in the hands of young people who are highly motivated to find solutions to today's challenges. Climate change affects us all, especially young people who need to be actively involved in creating solutions. Our task is to enable them to realize their ideas, to stimulate their potential. It is our obligation, as bearers of the digital transformation, to give young people a chance to become creators of their future," said Nikola Ljusev, Chief Executive Officer of Makedonski Telekom.
This year, young innovators will create digital solutions to tackle one of the biggest threats children and young people face all over the world – climate change. Secondary school students, university students, interested children and young people will have the opportunity to create innovative, applicable and sustainable tools and models to protect the environment and ensure better quality of life for the current and future generations.
In the previous challenges within “Generation Unlimited” initiative two teams from North Macedonia won global recognition. In 2020 the team eBionics were the winners of the category overall winners under 18 with their solution “Venus Arm”, an open-source 3D printed bionic arm for people with upper limb deficiency. In 2019 the team AndroMeta were among the global winners with their mobile app “Speak Out” to build a community of support for victims of bullying.
The best ten teams in 2022 youth challenge will be invited to a design thinking workshop to develop their ideas further. Following these workshops, the five most promising ideas will be selected and will receive financial and mentor support. The teams will work under the mentorship of experts in the field of climate change and IT specialists from Makedonski Telekom.
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.
This is the third partnership between UNICEF and the Telekom Foundation for Macedonia. In 2015, they cooperated on providing equal opportunities for early education in rural communities and opened eight early childhood development centers and in 2019 they cooperated on digital solutions to remove barriers that children and young people with disabilities face in education and community life.
This year the UNICEF and Telekom Foundation for Macedonia youth challenge is being implemented in cooperation with the Centar for social innovation BLINK 42-21.
For more information, please contact:
Telekom Foundation for Macedonia: Lea Lipsha, tel: +389 23242506,
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.