KUCHING, Dec 3 (Bernama) --
Sarawak youngsters are changing the social sector, by competing in social entrepreneurship competition organised by Sarawak Multimedia Authority (SMA) and Youth Trust Foundation to facilitate the process of becoming a digital economy driven state.
The Youth Sarawak Social Challenge 2019 was a competition open to all secondary school students and young adults around Sarawak. There were 2 categories – The ‘Youth Sarawak Social Project Challenge’ - for secondary public and private school students. The other – ‘Youth Sarawak Social Business Challenge’ - for students, young working adults, youth between 18 and 35 years old.
The 2019 challenge required the teams to develop social business ideas to improve the socio-economic livelihoods of communities in Sarawak.
9 schools and 9 teams consisting of youths from a different background from around Sarawak participated in the challenge which began in August this year.
“Social Entrepreneurship is an area that the Sarawak Government, through SMA and its partners, aims to bolster and enhance further. It is in line with the Sarawak Digital Economy Strategy, where digitally-enabled entrepreneurship is focused on uplifting the community and creating positive change in Sarawak. We are inspired that so many youths and students had taken up the call to participate with their ideas on helping the state,” – Hazwan Razak, Head of Digital Village, SMA.
The students and youths attended a 3-day ‘boot camp’ held at the M Hotels, Kuching learnt problem-solving skills, pitching skills, financial management and more. All 9 teams from each category pitched their fine-tuned ideas to a panel of judges on the third day of the boot camp. Out of 9 teams from each category, 5 teams were selected to go to the next phase, the market validation phase.
The 5 teams from each category were given 7 weeks of market validation with a budget of RM 1, 000 for the secondary school category and RM1,500 for the young adults category to kick start their projects.
Drawing on what they had learnt, they had to go through a market validation phase where their ideas – in the form of a product or service - were implemented and tested with the community of choice, impacting the beneficiaries.
“The market validation is an important phase, not only to test the market and see the traction or validity of the product or services but also to gauge the potential for the success of its’ sustainability. And on top of that, it is a learning phase for teams from both categories where they will learn more about themselves, teamwork and decision makings as they will face challenges and will have to somehow overcome it.” – Syarina Hisham, Assistant Manager Integrated Marketing Communications, myHarapan.
The challenge reached its culmination last week when the shortlisted 5 teams of each category made their final presentation and pitched their ideas to a panel of judges comprising representatives from SMA and Youth Trust Foundation. After reviewing each presentation carefully, the best 3 ideas for each category were announced by the panel judges as well as other prizes. The closing ceremony was attended by the Deputy State Secretary of Sarawak Dr Sabariah Putit, and she handed over the prizes to the winners as well as officially closed the event for the year.
For their impressive efforts, they received prizes ranging from RM5, 000 for the first prize through to RM1, 000 for third prize. There was also a consolation prize of RM500 for each category. The winner for the secondary category is students from SMK Semerah Padi while the young adult category is team ‘Gula Apong’.About Youth Trust Foundation – myHarapan
The Youth Trust Foundation (also known as myHarapan) is an independent and not-for-profit organisation dedicated towards empowering young Malaysians by supporting youth projects and initiatives that contribute to current nation-building efforts. We achieve this through providing various platforms and opportunities that help them scale, sustain, expand and multiply their impact. For more information on myHarapan, visit:www.myHarapan.orgwww.facebook.com/myHarapanwww.twitter.com/myHarapan http://myharapan.org
. SOURCE: The Youth Trust Foundation (myHarapan)FOR MORE INFORMATION OR TO SCHEDULE AN INTERVIEW, PLEASE CONTACT:
Name: Shaarane Jaykumar
Tel: +6016-680 7528