More than 740 organisations applied to participate at this year’s award ceremony in an effort to excite Europe’s youth about digital technologies.
Four NGO’s were recognised today for their hard work, creative ideas and efforts in making a difference through the power of technology at this year’s Meet and Code awards event. After scrutinizing and analysing hundreds of applications, 12 qualifying teams were selected by the expert judging panel and invited to join the initiative’s first virtual ceremony.
Born in 2017, Meet and Code sparks the interest of children, teenagers and young adults in software coding, and throughout 2019, the digital learning program encouraged organizers to compete in a friendly competition by coordinating events in the following categories; Community, Diversity, Girls do IT, and Code for your Planet.
More than 70 attendees joined the virtual awards which comprised of finalists, partners, employees, and expert speakers which announced each of the category winners to receive 2,000 Euros in prize money.
This year’s Meet and Code category winners are:
- Girls do IT! Germany’s ‘Foerderverein der Grundschule am Koppenplatz’ for their Robot fairytales. Based upon a story in Stanislaw Lem’s “Fables for Robots” encourages students aged 7–12 to design, build and program character robots and present them in a video trailer. The unique combination of theatre and robotics provides an easy and fun approach to coding and supports the need for girls in technology.
- Diversity. Hungary’s ‘Adj Esélyt Alapítvány’ for their Robotics Offline and Online initiative. Taking place over two consecutive days the program presented basics of coding for SEN students with floor-robots (offline) and Scottie-Go (online). The tools also support cognitive and social skills.
- Code for the Planet. Poland’s ‘Fundacja ArchitectsPL’ for their Designing and Printing the Coral Reef in 3D. In implementing the project, the team attempted to rebuild the world’s ocean reef using a coral design in CAD software and printed using 3D printers. Young students were invited to design artificial reefs that mimic the texture and architectural structure of natural reefs.
- Community. Italy’s ‘Cooperativa Sociale Meta Onlus’ for their guide to help discover neighbourhoods. The solution aims to build a guide to re-discover neighbourhoods by using a free augmented reality platform that involves coding elements using interactive experiences. During the event, children were involved with unplugged coding activity, such as drawing and adding content to flow diagrams. Older participants were able to use Augmented Reality for the first time providing geo-locate experiences and testing the results in real time.
Co-created and supported by SAP in partnership with Haus des Stiftens gGmbH and TechSoup Europe network of partners, Alexandra van der Ploeg, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility at SAP mentioned during the awards event that now, more than ever, children and young adults need to immerse themselves in the digital world from a young age.
“The Meet and Code program creates an experience that fosters group learning in a fun, interactive and inspiring manner. Considering today’s extraordinary challenges and circumstances, the Meet and Code team swiftly responded by adapting the awards ceremony to a virtual platform where we could commend and acknowledge participants for their hard work over the last twelve months while prioritizing health and safety first.”
Last year’s Meet and Code program totalled a successful 1,221 code events which provided funding of up to 500 Euros per event, enabling free participation to students and children. “Together with our partners, the initiative is a shining example of how we can accelerate our commitments to the UN SDGs, specifically, goal #4 – Quality Education, goal #8 – Decent Work and Economic Growth and we embrace goal #17 – Partnerships for the Goals through collaboration and working together to conquer Europe‘s digital divide,“ says TechSoup Founder, Anna Sienicka.
In closing Clemens Frede of Haus des Stiftens adds, “A triumph, Meet and Code’s first virtual awards ceremony was just a taste of what to expect for Meet and Code 2020. We look forward to seeing how the world of virtual and online learning comes to life as we prepare for yet another exciting year of digital skills development across EU.”
To find out more about this year’s Meet and Code event or to get involved, visit www.meet-and-code.org or connect and engage on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram using #SAP4Good #meetandcode and #codeEU.