2019 UN YOUTH CAMP: ‘Presentations’

Part of the activities at the 2019 UN youth camp in Incheon, Korea was to come up with action plans that would implement individual SDGs and help accelerate the implementation of the 2030 agenda. I was put in a vibrant group of 7 youth; Yoonjae Bae (Yonsei University), Hannah Jemaneh (SOAS University of London), Jiyoung Kim (Seoul National University), Jeonghwab Oh (University of St. Andrews), Juneyoub Han (Seoul National University), Suk In Jung (George Mason University) and Isaac Quashigah (Dankook University). We were to battle it out with five other groups.

We toiled for days before settling on a novel idea that went along with company  ‘pop-up stores,’ to address SDG number 4-Quality education.  Why a Pop-up store? A pop-up store is a temporary space run by a brand, aimed at opening up a physically engaging presence for customers to experience/gain more insight about a product. In our case, we had products/services we intended to share and sell to the public and in turn raise funds to promote quality education in underdeveloped areas.

From the products we had, there were two significant ones; coffee and study kits. The coffee idea predicated on the thought that some coffee farmers from underdeveloped areas have limited markets to sell their coffee to and because this eventually leads to low returns, they are unable to offer their children with quality education. Our pop up store was meant to expose their product to Korean people and help create a new market (Koreans love coffee), which would then improve their sales. From the profits garnered, they would then be able to offer their children with quality education, equip their schools with enough teaching and learning material and enhance the infrastructure.

Enter the study kit, ‘Kio-kit.’ Kio-kit -a digital toolbox, makes it easy for those in the remote/marginalized areas to access quality education. It contains 40 tablets pre-installed with quality school curriculum (sourced from advanced institutions) and then taken to schools in underdeveloped areas so that students there can have similar curriculum experience with those in ‘developed’ schools. It is produced by BRCK, a Kenyan based technology company.

So why have it in our pop-up store?

One Kit goes for 5,000 USD. That is pretty expensive for people, especially for those in the remote areas. Putting it in the pop-up store meant we could share the idea with the Korean public and help raise funds that would support the production of these Kits. The goal is to donate the proceeds to the producing company,  help cut on the production costs and therefore make the kits affordable. And scale up the production to boot and make it easy for many to access.

The funds generated at our pop-up stores were to be channelled to projects that sought to address quality education.

Anyway, to cut the long story short we won. We were among the best two groups.

For more, move over here  https://unosd.un.org/events/2019-3rd-sustainable-development-goals-youth-summer-camp .

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