Young innovators selected to represent the country at the Global imaGen Ventures Youth Challenge 2022

25 July 2022
The teams of young innovators that were selected to represent our country in the Global imaGen Ventures Youth Challenge 2022 stand celebrating holding up checks together with UNICEF and partners
UNICEF/North Macedonia/2022

Skopje, 22 July 2022 – Two teams of young innovators have been selected at the final event of the national Generation Unlimited - Technology for the Planet youth challenge to represent our country in the Global imaGen Ventures Youth Challenge 2022.

Five teams made up of children and young people aged between 16 to 24 presented their ideas on addressing climate change with digital technologies. Teams Bio Techno Logic and the Green Hot Chili Peppers were selected by a jury of experts.

The national youth challenge is implemented through a partnership between UNICEF and Foundation Telekom for Macedonia. This year the challenge was implemented by BLINK 42 – 21 Center for Social Innovation.

The ideas proposed by these young people will contribute to protecting the environment at the national as well as the global level. The Bio Techno Logic team created an automated digital organic waste bin, which in its final stage will produce natural bio-humus. The Green Hot Chili Peppers teams have designed a soil bin that separates waste and generates electricity. 

As a result of the innovative ideas presented, the jury decided to award one more team with 2,500 euros seed funding and mentoring support to further develop their idea. Considering that the fashion industry is responsible for 10 percent of the global CO2 emissions, the third team - Oh Swapp - plans to develop a mobile application for the exchange of clothes and books. 

“We are happy to be able to create venues and opportunities for you to develop ideas to combat perhaps the greatest threat to our future – climate change. I encourage you to dream big, to seek the answers and solutions to the problems that you wish disappear and to learn as much as you can during this process. All great innovations started as an idea and willingness to act, and I am proud to see this in you today,” said Patrizia DiGiovanni, UNICEF Representative.

Lea Lipsha, from Foundation Telekom for Macedonia emphasized the continued support the organization has provided to social innovation and youth ideas. She called on young people to believe in themselves and take advantage of the opportunity. “We have demonstrated on multiple occasions that we have young people who can compete with their peers at the global level. Technology is the best tool to address the challenges today; use it and show the world the potential that we have,” said Lipsha.

This year, the challenge was implemented by BLINK 42 – 21 Center for Social Innovation. This organization carried out both digital and field campaigns to engage young people and encourage them to join the national youth challenge. The public invitation resulted in 40 team applications made up of 127 secondary school and university students.

Zorica Velkovska, co-founder of BLINK 42-21, pointed out that their organization has been working with young people for ten years, and that digital tools that make everyday life easier for everyone are being created all the time.

“The results of this challenge confirm that young people deserve even more support from our society. This support should be very practical and concrete. In this challenge, the young innovators apply their knowledge in practice, contribute to a healthier environment, and also promote interaction and communication among secondary school students and university students from different cities,” according to Velkovska from BLINK 42-21.

Brief information about the winning teams:

  • Bio Techno Logic – Angela Isovska, Mihaela Petrovska, and Jovan Dejanoski are the young creatives who we're working on a “soil bin” over the past few months - a automated digital bin for organic waste where worms help decompose the waste, yielding natural bio-humus. By automating the maintenance process for the bio-decomposition function, the bin will be simple to operate and likely to be accepted for use in households and industry; the device could also be operated by a mobile application when people are away.
  • Green Hot Chili Peppers - Nikola Kocevski, Ljubica Ristovska, Kristina Cokovska, Jovan Simonovski and Teodora Petrovska are young students – innovators, environmentalists and enthusiasts, The essence of their idea is to find a permanent solution to the problem of waste, with an emphasis on sorting. They are developing a solution for a “smart” bin that use sensors to sort and separate waste into different categories. With built-in solar panels, the product would also be energy efficient. They also plan to develop a mobile application that will offer points and benefits to motivate people to sort waste.
     

Media contacts

Suzie Pappas Capovska
Tel: (02) 3231-244
Irina Ivanovska
Tel: (02) 3231-172

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