September 14, 2020
The novel Coronavirus pandemic that emerged earlier this year has brought to the fore varied and innovative ways of doing things. Churches have adopted online services, similarly, business organizations have resorted to working online and remotely. The irony of this situation has brought out the best of humanity. Although the pandemic brought with it devastating challenges, the response from the public has been phenomenal, to say the least.
When it comes to education, almost 90% of the world’s countries have shut their schools in efforts to contain the transmission of COVID-19. This is affecting a total of about 73.8% of total enrolled learners worldwide. In Ghana, close to 10 million students were affected by the school shut down. This was from the basic school level to tertiary.
It was on this note that the DreamOval Foundation, an NGO with focus on driving 21st-century innovation in education launched the Bright Minds Challenge for young people who have been home in the last 6months to explore their talents in innovation. Launched in July 2020, the Bright Minds Challenge sought to engage children to be innovative through essay competition, song and poem creation, painting, drawing and using scratch to address how Coronavirus has impacted their lives.
In all, 9 winners drawn from various parts of the country emerged as winners of the competition and were awarded during an impressive ceremony at the EPP Bookstore, Legon Mall. The children took away varied prizes such as laptops, smartphones, shopping vouchers from EPP Books, and many more items.
Speaking at the closing ceremony of the awards ceremony the CEO of DreamOval Limited, admonished the children to stay relevant in times like that, as the future was for them. He said the world is waiting for them to shine and become role models to impact the future positively. Speaking as part of the awards ceremony, the CEO of EPP, Gibrine Adam, advised the youth to take their studies serious s they are the future business owners and leaders of this great nation. He through, his ingenuity, gave every winner a smartphone as part of the prizes.
Bright Minds Challenge was launched to spearhead the narrative on distance learning and raise awareness to encourage learning at home. DreamOval Foundation believes learning must continue at home and within this period it can be fun and interesting and that’s exactly what we sought to achieve with the Bright Minds Challenge. There seem to be lots of misinformation concerning COVID 19 and no active engagement of children to enhance their knowledge on the topic, hence the need for a platform to ensure mass learning.
The challenge was targeted at children between the ages of 8 and 19 years. It was categorised into three categories, based on age and the type of submissions required.
Bright Minds Challenge has come to stay and would be an annual challenge to support the youth of Ghana. On that same platform, the foundation also announced the launch of AfriCAN Code Challenge, a coding challenge for youth between the ages of 8 to 16 years using Scratch. Winners will represent Ghana for the African Challenge taking place in October 2020. Three winners will emerge to represent Ghana.
DreamOval Foundation is an NGO dedicated to the development of STEM education Ghana. We do not take lightly this honourable call and we focus all our resources to enable us to fulfil our core mandate of knowledge creation, knowledge sharing and utilization.