Online lessons of Ukrainian language, a nationwide portal for posting decisions of local councils ,site for remote searching of a pet an animal shelter and resource for online monitoring of condition of crops - these IT projects won the second Vinnitsa "Creative Weekend" which was held on 10 -11 December at the center for innovation and entrepreneurship iHUB Vinnytsia.
Now the teams - authors of these projects will go to Kyiv so they can compete there for 2 million of UAN prize fund, intended for realization of their ideas.
During these 2 days, almost 20 participants where developing and protecting in front of the mentors theirs own IT-projects in spheres of education, agriculture, ecology and infrastructure. “Creative weekend “is an event where participants who have an idea, which is related to e-democracy, can get help from experts and opportunity to implement the idea into real life. Such competition was conducted in Vinnytsia for the second type in the phramework of the program EGAP- Challange
EGAP Challenge is a joint initiative of the State Agency of e-government, the East Europe Foundation, Innovabridge Fund and other partners in the framework of the program EGAP. Funded by the Swiss Confederation and implemented with the support of the Prime Minister of Ukraine. The project is focused to develop and implement innovative services in the field of e-democracy from services for citizens and businesses to the means of counteraction of corruption and increasing transparency in government.
The project is implemented in four cities of Ukraine: Vinnitsa, Odessa, Dnipro and Lutsk. During Saturday and Sunday mentors- consultants were listening to the presentation participants that this year Vinnytsia had about 20, in the end finally to select the the best ideas in each of the four priority areas.
We have to addmit that mentors were very surprised that this year weren’t registered any ecological projects in Vinnytsia.
The projects were offered by participants of different ages starting form students and finishing by very well experienced experts. Particulary the project of creating a resource center of electronic education was presented by very popular teacher Yurii Pasihov
One of the mentors and representative of Foundation Innovabridge Yordanka Tomkova noted that Vinnytsia is known for its best practices on e-governance, therefore from participants were expected exciting, creative ideas, which would be realistic in implementation .
- This is the competition, which is related to innovations. As mentors, we pay attention to several important things: first: focus to the results of realization of your projects . Secondly, your idea must be innovative related to e-services and e-democracy. When we had this competition of projects EGAP Challenge for the first time the conception of e-democracy wasn’t clear enough to all participants because it’s something new for Ukraine Thirdly, we are looking for projects which will have at least any business plan. We also pay attention to how do you plan to use the prize money in your projects. and of course we pay attention to the importance of your ideas for citizens.
If last year from the four cities of Ukraine were submitted 76 projects, this year we have 188. Regarding Vinnytsia, traditionally has the largest number of ideas which occur in the area of infrastructure, the majority of participants have registered their projects in this direction. Another five ideas were presented in the areas of aerospace and education.
During the second day of “Creative weekend”, teams were improving their projects by the advices of mentors. Qualified experts in the sphere of business and social projects, specialists of e-democracy, representatives of local and state authority, technical specialists helped to the participants However not everybody managed to reach the final presentation - several projects decided to withdraw probably they realized that they had some flaws that were unable to remove just two days. After the final presentation, instead of the promised 20 minutes, the jury consulted over an hour to determine only four winners.
- I think the most difficult was to choose a winner in the ecologic area because there were projects in that made the jury to argue a lot Despite the fact that in this area wasn’t registered a single project all mentors agreed that some of the projects which were connected with agriculture could be adapted to the environment. can say that as a person who was on the jury during the first stage, this time greatly increased the quality and number of projects, teams become more adapted and faster accepted mentors’ advises. I can say that as a person who was on the jury during the first stage, this time greatly increased the quality and number of projects, teams become more adapted and faster and listened to the advice of mentors. It's nice that the projects are ready even radically change the structure - said mentor of "Creative weekend" Alexander Melnik.
The winners of the second Vinnitsa "Creative weekend" became
- SmartFarmer, Coordinator of the project is Vadim Ostapenko. The project involves constant monitoring of crops and monitoring uncontrolled cutting of forests through satellite imagery. All satellite data is collected, processed and posted to the online resource. Thanks to the continuous monitoring of soil fertility and crop condition will be possible to attract foreign investors in the agricultural sector of Ukraine, because they at any time will be able to check out for yourself is it worth to invest in Agro-industries in the area.
The process of appearing of this idea was too long. I have been working for almost five years in this area - says Vadim Ostapenko. - I am in touch with people in the industry, know their problems and needs. The solution that we presented, can really help farmers. If this applies to crops and crop growing, our services and advice help to get more harvest, minimize costs and obtain higher profits.
- Ukrainian language courses online, Coordinator of the project is Anastasia Rozlutska. The project provides online teaching of Ukrainian to Russian speakingUkrainians those who live in temporarily occupied territories. The project has been running on a voluntary base for more than 4 years. During this time, the cooperation it was joined by 86 teachers, including the Kyiv-Mohylyanska Academy and the University of Shevchenko and 1789 ukrainians had been already trained and got certificates “ Ukrainian language courses online” "Ukrainian language courses online" have its network in 25 cities of Ukraine, 7 cells - in ATO area According to the project coordinator, participating in EGAP Challenge will help them to develop a network of courses and teach not only Russian speakingUkrainians , but also foreigners. They also plan to establish a single certification center of Ukrainian language .
Now we will prepare primarily semantic part of our project, site structure and will try to do its first demo version - says Anastasia Rozlutska. Our team here has received a lot of interesting ideas, but of course we will focuse more on our project We give the opportunity to children who are in the occupied territories to study Ukrainian online so they could pass the Sate Exam and to enter to our universities. We want to to return these children into our educational process and into Ukrainian informational space. What did we get during these two days? To focus on the concept of the things that we haven't noticed and systematize all the information and feedbacks that we received for our 4 years of work with our students
- Lapkam.com Project coordinator Roman Tsaruk. This project involves the creation of the site where will be placed the information about the network of shelters for animals and where every Ukrainian can choose a pet online. At the moment there is already a network of shelters and first information about animals. Activists plan to go to the national level and totally launch the project during the winter of 2016-2017.
By the final presentation we are going to prepare successful examples of such projects which helped people. Show me how it works in dynamics - says Roman Tsaruk. - It is necessary to finalize details of the project to more closely with the authorities. This competition was a great collaboration with mentors, and it helpes to grow when you are working with experienced professionals who are lit by your idea and together you can change the world. At this stage of our project funds aren't required, but in future money will be invested in its "promotion". Currently, we only prepare and test the system, so it's difficult to say what amount of money do we need.
- «MyRada: nationwide portal of councils and solutions», Coordinator of the project is Yuri Levchenko. The project involves countering corruption and the relationship with the authorities. First of all - it ensures the openness of councils from the smallest settelments to the largest localities of communities. The aim of «MyRada» is to create a single portal for publication of documents of councils and their decisions transparent mechanism of their control. For example, there is the council's decision to transfer the land of 100 square meters This decision was madeand placed on site of community or even on the notice board. Passes some time and by some not very fair agreements, this land is increasing by three times. The documend was faked and updated again on the side and none knows about it because no one controls this process
The project «MyRada»will make it impossible to fraud such documents. The team notes that their aim is also to teach authorities how to publish their own decisions without any violations.
As we havebeen told by the organizers, we will have very hard way to proceed, because simultaniously with our "Creative Weekend" was conducted the same in Odessa and there was one project which is very similar to our and it also won - says Yuri Levchenko. - So we have to work very effectively so in Kiev we can beat competitors and realize our project. Our team came out with this particular the idea because they saw that some local councils have the minimum resources that can provide the placement of these documents, and some even put their decisions in violation of all requirements. We decided to combine all of these self governent bodies into one resourse and provide access to it for everyone, so that everyone had the opportunity to publish in the same conditions these documents. our project need about 600 thousand grivnas. We use special technologies whuch will help to make each decision unsubstituted, to upload, which protects against frauds and illegal activities, and also we plan conduct training with the local authorities because they often complain that they do not know how to post such information.
These are the four teams which go to the next stage - pre-incubation. This means that they only have two months to improve their projects and present them at the final selection in Kyiv, which will take place in January and February.
Those four projects that will pase Kyiv stage will be provided with financial and logistical support for the implementation of their ideas. Winners receive 50-250 thousand UAH prize money to further development of their startups. Total prize fund of project - 2 million UAH to all ideas.
Daria Gotz, Vежа