13 digital startups from all over Europe from Italy to England, from Sweden to Serbia were invited to Graz to present their projects to more than 300 international guests and the festival jury. Topics were diverse: one project links generations, another offers a gadget for urban navigation on bicycles, while another helps in the search for part-time jobs. However, they are all characterized by social commitment and technical excellence.
The winning project: The EYA Young Digital Champion for 2016 was selected on the basis of the 13 winners’ presentations. Abdul Rahman AlAshraf convinced the 16 international experts of the festival jury with FreeCom. This is not only a crucial tool in war regions, but can also help in places without internet .The personal life history of
Abdul Rahman AlAshraf, now living and studying in Germany, led him to recognize the need for and to implement such an application. The jury found the project particularly praise worthy for using existing technologies and addressing contemporary social problems.
The fact that the application is introduced into the technology itself and does not have to be downloaded via an app store was the key reason for declaring FreeCom as the overall winner. Juror Georg Steinfelder says that the project is “a wonderful approach and a nice alternative.”