The 2023 Digital Innovators Competition, which is powered by First Central Group and organised by the Digital Greenhouse, opened on 13 February for all students aged 14+.
The competition is looking for individuals or teams of up to six people to build a solution to the following problem: As children get older in Guernsey, they become less active. How can technology be used to keep young people active in an inclusive and accessible way?
To enter this competition, the students will need to come up with a solution to this problem which uses technology in a new or innovative way, considering the users and how the solution will be adopted by these people in Guernsey, as well as design and technical specifications to your idea. The solutions do not need to be coded or built; the concept just needs to be presented clearly.
John Davison, Chief Information Officer at First Central Group, said: “It’s essential for the local industry that young people have opportunities to improve their technology skills on-island. This competition will provide students with an opportunity to learn and test themselves in a different way than they would normally encounter in the classroom.”
The problem statement is particularly relevant this year, the recently published Guernsey Young People’s Survey 2022 showed no change since 2019 with only 61% on students being physically active for at least 60 minutes on four days in the previous week. Guernsey was listed 12th in the world for childhood physical activity by the Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance in 2022.
Dr Simon Sebire, Chief Executive Officer of the Health Improvement Commission and Digital Innovator Program judge, has said there is still more work to be done: “The grades show that a significant number of our children and young people are not moving enough nor often enough to reap the mental, physical, and social benefits of regular physical activity.
“Enabling young people to improve their health by finding innovative digital solutions to the barriers they face to being active is a really exciting challenge and I can’t wait to see the ideas the students come up with.”
The competition is part of the Digital Innovators Programme, run by the Digital Greenhouse, designed to develop young peoples’ digital skills in preparation for a career in the technology and creative sectors.
Lucy Kirby, Director at the Digital Greenhouse, said: “Last year we saw five teams make it to the final, their ideas included an app to gamify the collection of data by allowing the public to log wildlife across the island, a glass bottle milk delivery service that aims to reduce waste and an app to identify and look after local plant life.
“We’re excited to yet again work with the island’s young innovators to build and apply their problem-solving skills and knowledge of technology to address real world challenges. Giving them these opportunities to showcase their solutions is important for them to gain valuable time working with industry.”
Students wishing to participate have until 5th May to apply and submit their solutions. The solutions will be judged by a panel comprised of experts from First Central, Health Improvement Commission and the Digital Greenhouse.
A prize giving will take place on 6th June, where awards for Best Technical Solution, Most Innovative Solution and Overall Winners Trophy will be given.
More information about the competition and how to enter a team can be found here.
Pictured: Digital Innovators Competition Winners 2022