Describe the problem that you want to address. How does this problem effect people in their daily lives?

The successful i-100 project (www.i-volunteer100.org), focused on promoting Euro-Mediterranean intercultural cooperation and partnership. It focused on raising awareness on the power of volunteerism for youth inclusion and empowerment, using a wide range of activities including an exchange of volunteers to Egypt and Cyprus, knowledge sharing and best practices opportunities, as well as awareness raising campaigns. One of the major successes of the project was the exchange of volunteers and the production of a campaigning manual for NGOs to handle volunteers and establish successful advocacy campaigns. Giving the opportunity to young people to spend time together, share experiences, thoughts and ideas was a valuable experience for the volunteers involved in i-100 from both countries. According to them, they made new friends and gained great knowledge and awareness of the Cypriot and Egyptian culture, traditions and customs. They were able to overcome the challenges related to the intercultural differences between a south European island and a MENA country, through the visits to a number of local voluntary organizations, their involvement in i-100 activities in both countries and, the knowledge gained especially their participation in a number of cultural events. While implementing the project the need for including more youth in both regions and invest in the culture of volunteerism to build the capacity of youth to become social and effective leaders became quite apparent. This need is based on the initial idea involving the active involvement, cooperation and cross regional partnerships among youth with the aim to build up and increase their engagement in civic participation and promoting volunteerism.

Describe your proposed solution – How does your approach build on or add to more traditional ways of dealing with problem?

i-Vee will be an interactive game for volunteers in Egypt and Cyprus. The idea is simply to develop a mobile game application that aims to raise awareness among youth aged 18-35 in Cyprus and Egypt on the culture of volunteerism and its importance in building their professional capacities and skills in order to become active global citizens and positive social activists within multicultural environments. The game will work online through the game platform and the major characteristic of the game which is Reward Points. For the gamers to finish levels and score high, they will earn reward points that can give them the opportunity to travel to Cyprus/Egypt and volunteer in CSOs that are in need for them. By this, the game will be implemented offline through locally given workshops to train winners on volunteerism before travels, and travelling to the other country to do the real-world civic engagement.

Which technologies are you planning to use and why? Please make reference to other similar uses of your proposed technology.

The first phase of i-Vee will involve a series of focus group discussions with young people in both countries (mixed groups) in order to identify the initial idea and content of the mobile game. The results of the research along with training with the game designers and the group of young people involved in the focus group discussions will lead to the development of the game. The second phase will involve the actual development of the game/app/platform. Through the whole process of development, and game building, the group of young people will be involved as a consulting body to the game designer. It will also include connecting with CSOs in Egypt and Cyprus to build a database of volunteering opportunities and train CSOs in both countries on how to host/train winners/volunteers. The third phase consists of the testing of the game by young people in both countries, and launching the game.