Microsoft India announced call for entries for its annual YouthSpark Challenge for Change, a global competition that encourages young people to consider how they can use Microsoft technology and YouthSpark resources to create positive social change in their communities.
Lowering the age limit for the first time to below 18, this online contest is inviting entries from Indian youth aged 13-25 years to share their ideas for sparking change in their communities, schools, college campuses, or the world. In its third year now, Challenge for Change is a part of Microsoft YouthSpark, which is Microsoft's commitment to empower young people through technology and provide opportunities in education, employment, and entrepreneurship.
Submissions to Microsoft YouthSpark Challenge for Change will be accepted online, until March 25, 2015. There are two age divisions: 13-17 years, and 18-25 years. Thirty global finalists - 15 in each division, will receive a Surface Pro 3 with Office 365. Finalists will submit videos detailing their ideas, which will be shared for public voting. Ten grand prize winners, five in each division and selected by a public vote, will win $2,500 to help make their ideas a reality, a Windows Phone and the opportunity to go on an amazing service trip to Nicaragua to learn about creating change. Public voting will take place from May 7-14, and winners will be announced on May 27, 2015.
Last year, five YouthSpark Challenge for Change Grand Prize Winners sparked change in their communities and beyond and went on to the Amazon jungles for a volunteer trip. Among the 5 winners was 23 year old, Sathya Subramanian from Mangalore who’s project Digital Literacy Program earned him a spot among the top 5 winner globally.
Speaking on this win, Sathya Subramanian, Winner, Microsoft YouthSpark Challenge for Change Contest 2014, said, “I basically want to create an impact within the community of underprivileged or people who are beyond the reach of technology, and teach them to use computers, and give them access to the Internet and make sure they make the best use of it. In India, an average of somewhere around 70 percent of the people do have a cell phone, they do have a smart phone, they use it, but the thing is, they don't know how to use it for their betterment like education or self-improvement, or to get something out of it just apart from a phone call or listening to music. So that's the thing which we are trying to impart.”