Smart Cities Application focuses on Healthy Children and Youth

Our community is coming together to support healthy children and youth in new and innovative ways!

The Region of Waterloo, Cities of Kitchener, Cambridge, Waterloo and Townships of Wellesley, Woolwich, Wilmot and North Dumfries, in partnership with UNICEF Canada have worked together to develop and submit Waterloo Region’s Smart Cities Challenge application to Infrastructure Canada.

Based on extensive public consultation, our community has selected Healthy Children and Youth as its community challenge area, and has developed the following challenge statement:

We will become the benchmark community in Canada for child and youth wellbeing by using early intervention, youth engagement and a connected-community framework to create adaptive, data-driven programs and scalable learning technologies that improve early child development, mental health and high school graduation rates.

The Children and Youth Planning Table, along with local children and youth, Wellbeing Waterloo Region, local school boards and post-secondary institutions, service providers,  government organizations and community, will be a key partner in the creation of innovative data-driven solutions to help address the challenges facing children and youth in our community.

Tech companies, including Miovision, Google, Vidyard, Desire2Learn, Canada’s Open Data Exchange, Communitech will partner with the Region and area municipalities through Phase 2 project and application development.

Phase 2 proposed projects include:

  • Building a real-time child and youth wellbeing dashboard;
  • Developing a measurement framework for UNICEF Canada’s Canadian Child and Youth Well-being Index;
  • Launching connected community spaces;
  • Creating customized, data-driven programming concerning science technology engineering arts and mathematics (STEAM), mental and physical health, early child development, among other areas; and,
  • Establishing a community-based data platform, and smart web and mobile applications.

Communities short listed for Phase 2 will be notified by mid-summer 2018. Those selected, will receive a $250,000 grant to develop their Phase 2 application due at the end of 2018. Winning proposals will be awarded with up to $50 million in prize money to help communities implement their smart cities solutions.

Please visit the Smart Waterloo Region website to read more about the Region’s Smart Cities Challenge application and to learn how Waterloo Region is coming together to address child and youth wellbeing in our community.