How partner-run Coolest Projects events are making a difference to digital makers around the world

Coolest Projects 2021 idea registration is officially open! The online showcase brings together a global community of young digital makers to showcase their tech creations with the world. 

Josh, our Global Community Coordinator, celebrates how two international partners ran online Coolest Projects events in 2020, to help inspire your Code Clubs to enter their COOL tech ideas to this year’s Coolest Projects online showcase! 

Bringing ideas together with Penang Science Cluster: Malaysia

In 2020, Penang Science Cluster did something really special: they ran a Coolest Projects online event across all of Malaysia and Vietnam.  

The team had a whopping 151 project submissions from a colossal 320 students across 14 states in Malaysia and Vietnam! Not only that, but they received over 20,000 public votes for the shortlisted projects.

Because it was an online event, Vi Tien Dat — a young digital maker who has cancer and is housebound in rural Vietnam — was able to take part. 

His team’s project ‘Radio for communicating with communities’ uses two micro:bits to transmit messages via radio signals and was inspired by his own personal situation. Take a look at Vi Tien Dat’s exceptional entry.  

His teacher said:

“Vi Tien Dat is a strong boy. He lives in Hoa Binh Province Viet Nam and although he has cancer, he still studies hard. As a result, he can do it! Thanks Coolest Project Malaysia for giving us a chance to take part.”

Well done to Aimy and her team at Penang Science Cluster for making this event such an enormous success and an unforgettable opportunity for young people like Vi Tien Dat.

A dazzling showcase in Belgium!

Coolest Projects in Belgium have been running for the past five years in the Technopolis arena (a science centre known for cool technology and science exhibits, including  its very own dinosaurs!). In 2020, for their big five-year celebration, they moved the WHOLE event online. 

The online showcase featured a dazzling showcase of 32 projects from 46 brilliant Belgian young creators, including 28 projects in Dutch, three in French, and one in English. 

Local celebrities supported the online showcase, including comedian and enthusiastic maker Henk Rijckaert; ICT Woman of the Year, Dewi Van De Vyver; and Young ICT Lady of the Year 2014, Wendy Vermoesen. They talked to the young makers about their projects and what it means to use digital making in your career.

The team had this to say: 

I think it’s exactly that level of accessibility that makes Coolest Projects so cool.

Everyone is welcome, all that matters is your enthusiasm and your idea and not so much the complexity or a high level explanation. It’s about inspiring kids to use the ability they have and put it into their own creative idea, for the world to see.

One project that really impressed me was ‘Water Maker’ by Salome Mehta, which aims to address the issue that millions of people around the world do not have access to clean drinking water.

The Belgian event will be run online again this year with the ambition to reach an even bigger audience. Well done to the whole Belgian team! 

Get involved with this year’s global online showcase

Idea registration is now open for Coolest Projects! Wherever you are in the world, invite your Code Club members to get creative and take part in Coolest Projects 2021!