Colombo, Sri Lanka, 20 October 2022: The demand to develop and put into practice new and innovative sustainable lifestyle methods that contribute towards a greener economy continues to surge, now more than ever as Sri Lanka sees itself in the wake of an economic crisis. The recent fuel hikes seen the world over along with the rise in cost of living and essential goods and services has also caused a paradigm shift, resulting in the search for alternative methods to promote sustainable living.
The Green Innovation Challenge, spearheaded by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Sri Lanka, as part of its flagship youth programme, HackaDev, was launched in August this year to bring young people to the forefront in addressing these issues and creating a platform for youth to develop innovative solutions to combat the climate challenge and contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Encouraging further collaboration on the project, UNDP has partnered with Dialog Ideamart, Vibhava Solutions and Zero Plastic National Movement, three organisations that work towards a sustainable and greener Sri Lanka, to create awareness of the project, equip youth with the knowledge and skills to modify their solutions, and provide youth with the opportunity to network with domain experts. The partners met to ceremoniously exchange Letters of Engagement, before officially announcing the partnership towards the challenge.
Following a national call for applications, and a subsequent idea auditions phase with over 100 ideas, the Green Innovation Challenge will now conduct a Social Innovation camp which will bring together 20 teams from all across the island to create a platform for Sri Lankan youth to collaborate with peers and tackle various development issues under thematic areas such as Water Management, Green Economy, Green Urban Living, Biodiversity and Conservation, Circular Economy and Eco-Friendly Living. Eventually, the teams will also undergo a selection process whereby they will be given funding and support to create sustainable social enterprises, encouraging them to be more actively involved in building a sustainable future for all.