The city has already realised 10 project over the past two years, Source: Depositphotos

Sofia seeks young people's innovative ideas in Academy for VISIONARIES 2023

Sofia seeks young people's innovative ideas in Academy for VISIONARIES 2023

The city wants new approaches to developing the urban environment and is willing to fund the best solutions

The Bulgarian capital of Sofia announced a new edition of an initiative to involve more young people in taking an active part in urban innovation. The initiative is called Academy for VISIONARIES 2023 (Академия за ВИЗИОНЕРИ) and is the third iteration of the event.

Fresh ideas for the city

During this year’s edition, Sofia residents aged 15 to 29 can participate in a programme filled with motivational sessions and mentors to develop a project that can be funded for 2,500 euros. The project needs to be focused on one of four fields – Art and Culture; Education and Environment; Science and Innovation; Vulnerable Animals.

People can sign up for Academy for VISIONARIES until the end of the month. The Academy proper will start in April with the first phase - motivational sessions with mentors, creating work groups and ideating on a potential project. This period would also feature practice-oriented workshops and training.

Several projects will be selected for funding and their work groups will have from June to November to actually turn their ideas into reality.

Past years’ achievements

In 2021, the city-funded five projects through the programme included VODORASLO 2 (Algae 2), an air purification system for indoor facilities based on algae. Another project was ‘Stolichna H2O’ aiming to reduce the use of plastic bottles in the city, by creating an interactive map, showing every public water fountain or restaurant, where citizens can refill their plastic bottles, free of charge.

Last year, the city also decided to fund five projects and they included ‘Fungita’ an initiative to allow people to grow their own mushrooms at home in a special mushroom bed, including a ‘seed-brick’. Another project was called ‘Otpechatak’ and it focused on reviving a local open stage in a public park in one of the city’s neighbourhoods.



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