September 29, 2021
DXC volunteers in Iberia are making a difference in the lives of children by promoting digital literacy via a coding contest. This fun and collaborative initiative to awaken and foster children’s interest in and passion for technology helps them develop and hone their computational thinking skills using a STEM approach.
2021 marked the sixth year of running the contest, which is targeted at children between 10 and 15 years old. The competition was originally open to young people in Spain, but this year was expanded to include Portugal. Children participating in the DXC Iberia Codes contest are assigned to either the junior or senior group based on their age. Teams working in pairs must design a video game, the objective being to address important real-world issues such as recycling, healthy habits or culture.
The children use the visual programming language Scratch. This language, developed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), is a basic tool to get started in programming in a simple and entertaining way. This year the contestants were asked to create a video game to pay tribute to the “Covid Heroes” who are helping the world through these challenging times.
This year there were 210 registered teams for the contest – up from just 15 when the challenge first launched – for a total of 420 participants. The teams submitted original and ingenious projects that included games about defeating the virus, paying respect to healthcare workers and celebrating the importance of family and friends during the pandemic.
A judging panel made up of DXC Technology employees evaluated the projects, selecting finalists from each region. This year the winning team in the junior category in Spain created a game called Not all heroes wear capes!, and the senior winning team developed Stickman Valley; the Portugal junior winners created Let’s end COVID-19, and the senior winners built Stop COVID. This year the program won the AUTELSI 2021 Award for ICT Information and Communications Technology Dissemination and Diffusion Work.
The DXC employees who worked on this program believe that the kids in the contest are heroes too, inspiring all of us with their positive attitude, their ability to overcome the challenges of these times and their joy.
Hats off to the DXC team leading this initiative: Carlota Guedes Figueiredo, Isabel Granda, Francis Figueiras, Susana de Jesús and Cristina Fernández de la Campa, as well as all the DXC employees helping judge the contest.