Name project group: Guardian

Project group members:

  • Steve Thijssen, ICT & Business, 4de jaars
  • Arjen van Gaal, ICT & Media Design, 3de jaars
“The concept ensures that children can share their story in a confidential environment in a low-threshold way.”

What was for you the reason to register for the preliminaries for ICTalent 2017?

The ICTalent awards is a good competition where you can present your concept to a large audience. Also we hope that through this competition and our concept we can show how important it is that a child can get help at any moment. Weather it is bullying, domestic violence or a question you don’t dare to ask anybody.

How can you best describe your product? What can it do? What does it do?

Guardian is a web based chat platform for children between the ages of 8 en 18. When the chat is opened a language setting can be chosen, which enables each child to chat in their own language. Because the chat platform automatically ask short questions care givers can see what direction the conversation is going. Based on this the right care giver with the correct knowledge can be brought in and take over the conversation. For the children it looks as if they are always talking with the same ‘person’ the Guardian Bot. This character is a child friendly persona which appeals to children and generates trust.

To keep it as anonymous as possible we don’t ask children for personal data (like name and email). But for each conversation a unique link is made which can be saved by the children, so they can come back to the same conversation. This allows for employees of organisations to be involved, who can help at certain hours. We see Guardian as a surplus to the “Kindertelefoon”, where questions are taken serious and help can be given immediately if necessary.

What makes your product so unique?

Guardian ensures that difficult-to-manage topics can be shared in a low-threshold way. The way a conversation goes through makes the concept so unique. This also allows organizations to work together because a conversation can be taken over by a professional. This ensures that it can have a big social impact, because it is scalable and applicable and provides assistance for each child.

Which teacher coached you or has inspired you?

We are mostly inspired by the media and our personal environment, mainly the story by 15 year old Tharukshan Selvam from Heerlen. We are coached (amongst others) by:

  • Régine van Lieshout (Manager Innovation Lumenswerkt)
  • Employees City Council Eindhoven en GGD

Why should you win the ICTalent Awards 2017?

We would love and be honoured when we win. The concept ensures that children can share their story in a confidential environment in a low-threshold way. We think this can have a big impact and help many children.

What, if you win the first prize of 2000 euro per person? How are you going to use the money to develop your product or your talents?

We would like to cooperate with the Kindertelefoon, as they have already arranged the entire IT infrastructure and fit the concept well. In addition, we would like to spend a month in California to attend as many as possible Meetups, hackathons and other events, to further develop ourselves in both personal and professional fields while contributing to key issues in the world that often recur in these events.

And… what do you want to tell your competition?

We are very excited about the final and hope that we can convince everyone that this concept has a lot of added value to society and the way you can get help as a child.