#GirlsMakeTech: TechnovationHK – Join the Movement and Support Hong Kong Girls Succeed in Technology and Entrepreneurship
Our Theory of Change
If you can teach and encourage a Hong Kong girl to embark on a journey embracing computer science and entrepreneurship, she can not only create her own job and 21st century career, but also help create innovative solutions to solve some of our today's most pressing problems.
Background of Technovation Challenge
According to US charity Girls Who Code, tech jobs are among the fastest growing in the US, yet girls are being left behind. In particular, the biggest drop off in interest in computer science ends to happen between the ages of 13-17.
(Source: https://girlswhocode.com/about-us/ )
Technovation Challenge was created by US charity Iridescent to increase engagement amongst school girls in technology and entrepreneurship for the jobs of tomorrow, and to build the talent pipeline for girls in STEM to embrace the opportunities in the tech industry.
In early 2017, social enterprise Young Makers & ChangeMakers (YMCM) brought the world’s longest running global technology entrepreneurship challenge especially for girls for the first time to Hong Kong, and we want to be able to impact more girls across Hong Kong.
Our Impact To Date
With the support of the Hong Kong SAR Education Bureau and Innovation and Technology Bureau, 290+ girls aged 10-18 forming 80+ teams from 40+ schools across Hong Kong guided by 100+ mentors participated in Technovation and learned to ideate, prototype and create a mobile app solution using MIT AppInventor to address UN Sustainable Development Goals in the areas of the education, environment, equality, health, peace and poverty.
To augment the global online curriculum, YMCM created its TechnovationHK: #GirlsMakeTech 2017 program, which connected learning approach comprised:
- a workshop on ideation, prototyping and business modelling hosted at the Commonwealth Bank Innovation Lab;
- workshops on coding using MIT AppInventor hosted at Google Hong Kong and run by MIT AppInventor Master Trainers;
- a workshop on digital marketing, branding and pitching hosted at INFINITI LAB;
- working in next generation workspaces such as WeWork Tower 535;
- TED type presentations by local charity leaders and social entrepreneurs to help the girls better understand issues of education, equality, environment, health and poverty in Hong Kong so that they can create solutions to solve real problems;
- a two-day BootCamp@HKU including Hong Kong female tech leaders, entrepreneurs and investors inspiring Hong Kong girls on their social-tech projects and their future entrepreneurial journeys, and to help them complete their submissions by the April 26 deadline; and
- a Hong Kong Pitch Finals and Celebrations co-organized with Cyberport, where notwithstanding the inaugural year of this challenging competition, Hong Kong fielded 22 teams who created innovative app solutions that addressed issues ranging from pollution, dementia, emergency care, waste, charity fundraising etc.
Video of Ideation and Prototyping Workshop at CBA Innovation Lab (March 2017):
Video of all girls that created app solutions for HK Pitch Finals at Cyberport (May 2017):
And all of this was offered for free to the girls, and powered mainly by student volunteers such as from the awesome Hong Kong Joint Students Association of Student Unions and by wonderful volunteer facilitators and mentors (including dedicated teachers).
It is a source of pride that in our inaugural year, our top Junior Team (Dementia Care Companion) has been selected as one of the top 12 finalists amongst 1100 teams worldwide to pitch at the World Pitch Summit in San Francisco in August 7-11, and so when joined by our top Senior Team (Team SPCS) which will be a Visiting Team sponsored by Alibaba Hong Kong Entrepreneurs Fund, Hong Kong will be well represented with two teams in Silicon Valley.
Video of HK Pitch Finals and Celebration at Cyberport (May 2017):
And beyond the Technovation competition, we have facilitated and encouraged teams of girls to participate and pitch at industry events such as StartupWeekend: Women In Tech, Pitch Like a Girl and RISE Conference.
Testimonials from the Girls:
Why We Need Your Help
We were very fortunate to have the cool venues and prizes for the girls have been generously sponsored by various companies, but to date, no cash sponsorship has been received to cover out-of-pocket costs and expenses. We wanted to help build a better sense of community amongst the Hong Kong girls by eg, providing them with #GirlsMakeTech T-shirts, but lacked funds.
Next year, we want to be able to grow the program even bigger and better for more Hong Kong girls, such as being able to pay small stipends to university students to help the girls with troubleshooting their code solutions, and hiring a part-time administrator to better co-ordinate with the many schools and mentor enquiries about the Technovation English-language platform and processes.
With your help, we can ensure that many more girls across Hong Kong will get the opportunity to be part of this growing educational journey and community.
Please support our initiative to help Hong Kong girls succeed in technology and entrepreneurship, and receive some of the cool one-of-a-kind and collectible rewards listed down here, all of which are designed to let you feel and be part of the movement of #GirlsMakeTech!
Early Bird Specials – Limited to First 20 backers
T-shirt – I’m A TechGirl (1-give-1) US$50 T-Shirt – I’m A Supporter (1-give-1) US$60
(from US$60) (from US$75)
Ultimate Fan – I’m A TechGirl (1-give-1) US$70 Ultimate Fan – I’m a Supporter (1-give-1) US$90
(from US$80) (from US$100)
Digital – I’m A TechGirl US$5 Digital – I’m A Supporter US$10
Sticker – I’m A Tech Girl US$10 Sticker – I’m A Supporter US$15
Charm – I’m A TechGirl US$15 Charm – I’m A Supporter US$25
Swag Bag – I’m A TechGirl US$25 Swag Bag – I’m a Supporter US$45
T-shirt – I’m A TechGirl (1-give-1) US$60 T-Shirt – I’m A Supporter (1-give-1) US$75
Ultimate Fan – I’m A TechGirl (1-give-1) US$80 Ultimate Fan – I’m a Supporter (1-give-1) US$100
Team Supporter (6-give-6) US$500 School Supporter (22-give-22) US$1800
#GirlsMakeTech Benefactor’s Circle US$500
Please note that these are not the final designs - we plan to refine them so that these are items all TechGirls and their Supporters would be proud to wear. We will reach out to you regarding T-shirt sizes. We are targetting trying to get your rewards to you by Christmas, and so they make great Christmas and end-of-year presents for the TechGirls in your life!
Please also note that these rewards are with individual backers in mind - if you are a corporate and/or charitable foundation, please contact us separately for tailored opportunities to collaborate on this initiative.
So… please join the movement and support #GirlsMakeTech now!
For More Information
If you’d like more information, please check out the following links:
- Technovation Challenge: http://www.technovationchallenge.org/chapters/
- Young Makers & ChangeMakers (TechnovationHK: #GirlsMakeTech organiser): https://www.facebook.com/YoungMakers.ChangeMakers/ ; http://www.scmp.com/lifestyle/families/article/1852146/hong-kong-hackerspace-movement-lets-children-learn-creating
Importance of addressing the gender talent gap in the tech industry:
HK girls' teams to compete at Technovation World Pitch Summit