Jordan University team wins Coca-Cola grant
Beirut, March 18, 2014
A team from Jordan University won the first place, receiving a $10,000 grant from the Coca-Cola Foundation, for their environmental conservation ‘Warm Light’ project.
More than 7,600 students from 43 universities across Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Jordan, Palestine and the UAE took part in the ‘Ripples of Happiness’ programme, which was conducted by the Coca-Cola Foundation, in partnership with Injaz Al-Arab, a non-profit organisation committed to inspiring, preparing and empowering Arab Youth.
Dar Al Hakma College in Jeddah came in second with its child obesity ‘My Health, My Responsibility’ project, which secured them $7,000 grant to implement their idea.
The University of Bahrain secured third place and $5,000 for their ‘You are responsible’ or 'Enta el Mas200l’ project, that will raise awareness of the impact of electronic waste.
The students were given a mere sum of $500 dollars to work with to make them understand the importance of fiscal responsibility, said a statement.
Sheikh Khaled Bin Zayed Bin Saqer Al Nehayan, chairman of Injaz-UAE and Injaz Al-Arab, said: “We are thrilled to partner with the Coca-Cola foundation for yet another successful term of the ‘Ripples of Happiness’ programme. This initiative corresponds with the very essence of Injaz Al Arab, in the sense that it aims to bridge the gap between education and work-force readiness.
“The Coca-Cola Foundation once again contributes to the cultivation of preparedness and compassion among young students allowing them to leave a positive mark on their respective communities.”
The winning project, ‘Warm Light’, from Jordan University aimed to tackle issues related to environmental conservation by using alternative energy sources. The students used mundane and recycled products to produce power.
The end results were a decrease in the cost of lighting and increased heating without the utilisation of electricity or petrol- an ideal combination for people living in impoverished communities.
The second runner up, ‘My Health, My Responsibility’ from Dar Al Hakma college, sought to increase awareness on the issue of child obesity. The students were able to convince several restaurants, including fast food outlets, to provide healthy meal options.
They also struck a deal with a leading telecommunications company, to send 5,000 text messages raising awareness of obesity to mothers across the kingdom. Finally, they set up an interactive booth in Red Sea mall with a nutritionist on the stand giving free health tips and advises, to raise awareness.
The third runner up from the University of Bahrain, ‘Enta el Mas200l,’ sought to increase awareness and reduce electronic waste via the implementation of a public relations campaign.
The students set up a booth with activities and games at the university’s two-day National Day event that is hosted annually. Over 300 prizes were distributed. Furthermore, students were asked to fill out e-waste surveys and brochures were distributed.
Two other projects that were note-worthy included the ‘Minutes of Hapiness’ from Dubai Women’s College, which sought to assist municipality workers to communicate more with loved ones without spending the majority of their salaries on making calls – the students demonstrated initiative by breaking down social barriers, entering labour camps and interacting with labourers; and ‘Bosma & Basma’ from Palestine Polytechnic University, built a garden/playground for kids with special needs by using every day recycled objects.
Antoine Tayyar, director of Public Affairs and Communications, Coca-Cola Middle East, said: “It brings us great pleasure to witness how the ‘Ripples of Happiness’ programme continues to gain momentum among the Arab youth and awaken social consciousness in the hearts and minds of every individual the programme touches.
“The aim of Ripples of Happiness is to train the youth on the necessary skill-sets required to identify the problems that arise in their local communities and how to proactively tackle these issues by looking past the problem and into the opportunities. It also drives public interaction and rallies the support of the society as a whole in aiding the students spread their messages.” - TradeArabia News Service