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Innovation workshops for children being held in HCMC

Released at: 16:46, 31/05/2019

Innovation workshops for children being held in HCMC

Photo: SIHUB/2019/Dong Huynh

Some 140 children and adolescents in HCMC to participate in product design program to innovate planet-friendly products.

by Nghi Do

UNICEF Vietnam, Saigon Innovation Hub (SIHUB), and the Arkki Creative School of Future Innovators, are co-organizing a series of “Children Innovate: Planet-friendly Product Design” workshops during the summer of 2019, with the first held already.

Around 140 children and adolescents between 10-19 years old from poor and vulnerable neighborhoods in Ho Chi Minh City will participate in the innovative skills development program, which is within the framework of the city’s “Child-Friendly City Initiative” project (2017-2021), supported by UNICEF and following on from the success of the “Children Innovate: A Child-friendly City” workshops.

The program will be implemented by SIHUB in partnership with Arkki under the overall framework of the Child Friendly City Initiative and with support from UNICEF in Vietnam.

“I am delighted to see how our young innovators have embraced the importance of acting responsibly towards the environment,” said Ms. Marianne Oehlers, Chief of the Program Partnership Office at UNICEF. “We hope their safe and child- and environmentally-friendly innovations will inspire the community and the market.”

Children pitched their planet-friendly prototypes on May 31 to parents and guests from government agencies, non-government organizations, and the corporate sector at SIHUB.

Thirty-six girls and boys participated in the first series of five-day workshops this week. They were the proud winners of the “Children Innovate: Smart and Child Friendly Cities” exhibition held during Saigon Innovation Week last October. Together with Arkki trainers, they tested the planet-friendly product design program, from problem definition to understanding users’ needs, designing, prototyping. and finally pitching their prototypes to peers, parents, community members, and interested private sector partners.

“Innovation in the 21st century aims to create products that are socially responsible and sustainable,” said Mr. Huynh Kim Tuoc, Co-founder and CEO of Saigon Innovation Hub. “That’s why it is critical to involve children at this early stage, so they become aware of and can help create awareness among their peers, parents, and community members on the importance of environmental responsibility and sustainability. I value the Children Innovate Program is an important contribution in nurturing a generation of future innovators for Vietnam’s startup ecosystem.”

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