Innovate for Fayoum Challenge

Highlights

  • For 5 days, 45 young women and men used design thinking to innovate.
  • The top solution currently being incubated at GESR is a re-designed shrimp-peeling table "a mini lab" for fishermen's wives, to make the peeling process hygienic and to improve the quality of shrimp shells.
  • UNDP launched an Innovation for Development Lab (I4D Lab) in 2014 as a response to the growing complexities of local development challenges and increasing potentiality of innovation to tackle them.

During a 5-day social innovation camp, youth from all over the country gathered to co-design their own innovative solutions, to improve the livelihood of fishermen in Fayoum, through the use of human-centered design.

For 5 days, 45 young women and men used design thinking to innovate in the camp organized by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), supported GESR, a local social innovation lab, and the Ministry of Local Development in launching the “Innovate for Fayoum” challenge. They had the opportunity to speak to the Chief of Fishermen and observe, engage and interview the community, fishermen, their wives, public fish markets, and the authority responsible for the fish stocking process. Teams came up with exciting solutions such as an aquaponics systems, technologies to improve the fish stocking process, innovative designs for household sewage systems, recycling fish waste and efficient tools for shrimp peeling. After the camp, the teams were given 6 weeks to prototype their products and then were evaluated by a panel of experts. 

The top solution currently being incubated at GESR is a re-designed shrimp-peeling table "a mini lab" for fishermen's wives, to make the peeling process hygienic and to improve the quality of shrimp shells. Moreover, the team is recycling and processing the shells into a chemical called Chitosan, which is heavily used in the agricultural and pharmaceutical industry. 

“We noticed that a lot of people in Fayoum (Qaroun’s Lake villages) are doing one thing; shrimp peeling. We thought of how to transform shrimp peeling from an activity to a product that can be sold to support the women and their families financially”, said a team member of teams being incubated by GESR.  

UNDP launched an Innovation for Development Lab (I4D Lab) in 2014 as a response to the growing complexities of local development challenges and increasing potentiality of innovation to tackle them. Through the I4D Lab, UNDP Egypt explores, tests, applies and scales up new innovation trends, approaches and methodologies applied in development practice. UNDP Egypt I4D Lab works closely with youth, people with disabilities, women and low-income communities with the purpose of empowering them in becoming agents of change.

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