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Standard Chartered Bank Uganda in partnership with ECOTRUST have launched a USD 18,565 (Shs 69,450,000) Climate Change Innovation Challenge.

The challenge was launched by the Lead Forest Officer, Ministry of Water and Environment; Bob Kazungu at Old Kampala SS. The Climate Change Innovation Challenge is one of the bank’s long month planned environmental initiatives.

The Climate Change Innovation Challenge will drive secondary school students in the Kampala Metropolitan Area to use their critical-thinking and research skills to come up with innovative solutions to environmental issues affecting their communities. The Innovation Challenge core objective is to further advance the Bank’s bold STAND  ‘Accelerating Net Zero’. Five innovative proposals will each be funded to a tune of USD1,000 to implement the ideas.

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Further, the Bank will partner with Buhimba Farmer’s Union under the employee volunteering programme in the implementation of a tree cover restoration project for smallholder farmers in Kikuube district in the Albertine Rift Region.

Margaret Kigozi the Head, Corporate Affairs Brand and Marketing of Standard Chartered Bank Uganda said; “The youth are an important constituency in the conservation of biodiversity and have a huge impact on it. They are energetic, technology-savvy, constantly evolving, oriented to problem-solving and often propagate active consumerism. Their strong comprehension on sustainability which advocates for reduction in footprints and improved quality of life across sectors and industries is essential for the future. We are therefore excited to see several schools coming on board and eager to take part in this Climate Change Innovation Challenge and wish all the participants the best as they compete for the top spots as the rewards will be lucrative.”

Bob, the Lead Forest Officer Ministry of Water & Environment, commended the Bank and its partners for this initiative stating; “On behalf of the Government of Uganda, I wish to heartily thank Standard Chartered Bank Uganda and its implementing partners for supporting Government efforts by investing in involving the youth in promoting environmental conservation as well as appealing to the consciousness of the entire nation to be more proactive in finding solutions to solve the environmental challenges we are all faced with today.”

He said the innovation challenge is indeed a good example of ‘best practices’ in the fight against climate change associated effects and as Government we pledge our continued collaboration with the bank in your climate change journey.

“ I  appeal to various communities to all play a role in solving this issue by first and foremost changing their mindset towards environmental conservation by proactively planting trees at every opportunity and changing their impact on the environment by for instance using alternative fuels that don’t require tree cutting as well as adopting environmentally friendly behaviours and options. Together I am certain we shall navigate the various devastating climate change challenges we experience today,” he said

 Schools participation Process;

Invitations to participate in the Climate Change Innovation Challenge will be sent out to at least 30 (thirty) schools within the Kampala Metropolitan Area.

The participating students are expected to develop a solution to an environmental issue affecting their school or community. The students report on the problem and their proposed solution through a clear “action plan” and an itemized budget in line with the activities set in the proposal.

The proposals are to be submitted via email to scbchallenge@ecotrust.or.ug by 5 pm on the 3rd of July 2022 in advance of the final pitching by 10 shortlisted schools to be held on 8th of July 2022.

 The shortlisted school – teams will be invited to the pitching event and will be given 10 minutes to present their action plans In front of a panel of judges.

The winning ideas will be recognized and awarded at the event on 8th July 2022. The top five winners will each receive USD 1000 whilst the other participants will also walk away with gifts courtesy of Standard Chartered Bank Uganda.