A computer and mobile game that seeks to increase awareness about the benefits of healthy food such as fruits and vegetables and the negative impacts of junk food was declared the winner of the Child Gameathon that was held in Dhulikhel from April 17-19.
The game “Healthy-I” was developed by team “Enigma,” comprising of Softwarica College of IT and E-Commerce students Bhuwan Acharya, Amrit Sapkota, Basanta BK and Ankur Lamichhane.
Conducted second year in a row, the apps development event is a joint initiative of UNICEF and Microsoft Innovation Center Nepal. The event aimed to develop innovative and fun web, mobile and desktop game applications that improve children’s learning outcomes.
According to a joint press release issued by UNICEF, more than 100 young developers, programmers and designers came together as 29 teams for the 54-hour game application development race. The participants were briefed about various issues concerning children in a series of college roadshows, boot camps and ideathon sessions to provide right skill sets to develop games as well as to create an idea with a basic proof of concept before the event. The participants also visited a local school and primary health care centre in Panchkhal in Kavre district to learn about the issues first hand.
Preparing for the final pitch to the jury panel on the final day, the teams focused on developing game solution prototypes for the problems they had identified including waste management, child marriage, birth registration, immunisation, child nutrition and health, disaster preparedness, etc. The teams were mentored by experts in the field to further enhance the game solutions.
A closing ceremony was organized April 19, marking the end of the competition. A motion-sensing game that enhances children’s creativity developed by Team “Creatu Developers” comprising of National College of Engineering students Raju Shrestha, Mohan Singh Thagunna, Rabi Shrestha and Nishesh Tamrakar was announced as second place winner. Similarly, team “Octavian” comprising of Kantipur Engineering College students Sangam Shrestha, Amir GC and Sunil Lama was named third place winner for the team’s three-dimensional interactive game about girl trafficking. The winners were awarded trophies for winning the first, second and third places.
All three winners, along with four other top performing teams of the Child Gameathon, will be included in a three-month intensive incubation period at Microsoft Innovation Center Nepal to help them develop and scale up their game applications into sustainable business solutions. At the end of the three months, the seven teams will again compete against each other for cash prizes of NRs. 2,00,000, 1,00,000 and 50,000 as the first, second and third prizes respectively.