Vodafone Foundation is launching a competition to promote IT applications designed to improve the lives of people with disabilities and older people.
The programme, called the Smart Accessibility Awards, is supported and co-organised by AGE Platform Europe, the European network of around 160 organisations of and for people aged 50+, and the European Disability Forum (EDF), that represents the interests of 80 million Europeans with disabilities.
The competition will award the best smartphone application covering social participation, independent living, mobility and wellbeing.
Social participation refers to applications which help users to participate actively in society and benefit from the facilities that technologies can offer, whatever their age, disability and/or capacity. Examples include using the web and social media through mobile devices and contacting people using mobile devices.
Independent living includes applications which help users to be more autonomous and perform daily tasks independently, such as using domestic appliances - washing machines, refrigerators and so on - and opening doors safely.
Mobility covers applications which enable users to move around more freely and safely using the whole range of transport modes. It can also refer to the use of mobile devices as guides in unknown environments.
Wellbeing refers to applications which improve the users' health.
The total prize fund of the €200k will be split equally between the four winners. The competition is open from 14 June 2011 to 15 October 2011. All entries should be submitted via this link >>
All qualifying entries will be evaluated in November by a jury comprising representatives from AGE Platform Europe, European Disability Forum and Vodafone Foundation.
Twelve finalists will be selected and requested to present their application before the final jury in Brussels in December at a live final, where the four overall winners will be chosen.
Vodafone Foundation Director, Andrew Dunnett said: "The Vodafone Foundation is keen to help as many people as possible benefit from new technologies. The Smart Accessibility Awards will help developers create apps that can really make a difference to people's lives - we are thrilled to be able to support such an important initiative."