The Orange Foundation launches the 1st International Solidarity FabLabs Challenge


On 2 November 2015, the Orange Foundation launched the 1st International Solidarity FabLabs Challenge, which will run through the end of January 2016, the final date for application submissions.

The competition - a first in France and in 8 countries - is open to the 32 FabLabs supported by the Foundation. Young FabLabs makers must carry out digital creation projects - a solution, an application or a 3D object - to reinvent daily life in the city of the future. The objective is to put the spotlight on a totally new method of learning and to provide a springboard for young people without qualifications.

The challenge: to make the city smarter and more socially responsible

The “I make 4 my city” Challenge which begins in October will be a showcase of all that these young people in difficulty are able to create with digital technology, through collaborative supervision and a support network designed for their needs. The challenge is aimed at young people hosted by Solidarity FabLabs: aged 12 to 25, who have dropped out of school with no qualifications. This is the first time in France and abroad that they will be given such visibility.
Participants must design and create an object, a prototype, an application or a solution to improve the daily lives of the inhabitants of their city.
The young "makers" must work as a team, with the usual FabLabs tools: 3D printers, laser cutter, vinyl cutter, digital sewing machine, milling machine, thermoforming, specialist software and other more traditional tools.
The Foundation Jury and web users' votes will reward the most remarkable project, either for its creativity, its relevance or for the solidarity it will enable.

Three prizes will be awarded in April 2016, each for a sum of €15,000:

  • The Jury's Grand Prize.
  • The "Favourite" Prize.
  • The Web Users' Prize.

A passion for digital technology, a new chance for young people in difficulty

Brigitte Audy, Deputy Director of Sponsorship and Solidarity, Orange Foundation General Secretary since July 2014, sees this creative Challenge as a new stage in the Social Labs sector: "by organising this competition, we hope above all to give another chance to these young people in difficulty, by highlighting their passion and increasing their chance for recognition and integration in the world of employment. We know the digital ecosystem well, and what it can offer them: new skills, new occupations and business creation... They must also be motivated with a positive approach and concrete projects.
Our Solidarity FabLabs are a gateway between these young people aged 12 to 25 years who are at odds with traditional teaching methods, and special programmes based on doing and sharing."

Follow the challenge

  1. On the Orange Foundation website

Press contacts

Marie-Paule Freitas : +33 1 44 44 93 93 –
Claire Contamine : +33 6 10 93 03 92 –

About the Orange Foundation

The Orange Foundation is committed to three areas of philanthropy: education, health and culture.
In relation with Orange's core business, it hopes to use digital technology to help populations in these three areas, such as young people who are struggling at school or who have no qualifications, women in unstable situations and people with autism to help them better integrate into society.
The Orange Foundation takes action to ensure that digital technology, which has become essential, is an opportunity for all. A digital solidarity foundation, it is currently active in 30 countries, with 8,000 committed employees.

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