The Iranian Red Crescent Society (IRCS) together with the Airbus Foundation started a joint initiative to train thousands of youth and teenagers by using the robotics to develop their skills in responding to disasters and creating safer and more resilient for the future communities.
The pilot programme which was hold in April 2016 in Tehran included three youth centres and expanded to other provinces during 2017 and 2018. Both IRCS and Airbus Foundation tried to reach more than 6,000 participants by the end of 2018. The IRCS brought its network of 400 branches in 31 provinces to broaden the reach of the Airbus Little Engineer programme among talented youth members across the country.
We believe that it was an opportunity for the IRCS to find partners willing to work to respond to ground realities in complex environments to take and create scalable solutions. We are confident that this relationship empowered and engaged the youth to better care for their communities before, during and after disasters. This type of cooperation was a successful model to be replicated elsewhere. We are confident that this kind of partnership has had a great success for years to come for the talented youth and teenagers.
The collaboration between the IRCS and the Airbus Foundation focused on the application on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics among the youth and teenagers. This programme aimed to inspire and engage students through robotics and aerospace workshops and contribute to creating a sustainable stream of talent for the region.
Originally designed as a one-day aerospace workshop for children, the programme expanded into a seven-week module focusing on the humanitarian needs in times of disaster. The module was developed based on the expertise and available knowledge with relevant domestic disasters like earthquake, road accidents, flood, etc. in Iran.
Participants in each group trained in core humanitarian mission areas including establishing communications in the wake of a disaster, relief and rescue operations, managing supplies and logistics. The programme operated on four levels: first, training 12 to 14 years old in robotics and increasing their STEM skills; second, in disaster management, improving students’ understanding of and response to risk reduction, preparedness and relief; third, building a network of engineering students to serve as mentors and trainers; and fourth, building resilience in both sets of students.
Given the fact that this type of learning was by doing, the overall evaluation by the trainers and trainees indicated a high satisfaction of the content, methodology, trainers’ knowledge and learning tools.
The Airbus Foundation works with more than 30 non-profit organizations all over the world, including the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) to support humanitarian causes and engage young minds to embrace science and technology for a better tomorrow. The Airbus Little Engineer programme in Iran is the latest repetition of the global partnership agreement between the IFRC and the Airbus Foundation.
The Iranian Red Crescent Society (IRCS) is a humanitarian organization established in 1922 and implements based on the rules of the Islamic Republic of Iran. The IRCS mission includes effective contribution to protection and promotion of human dignity, improving the life-Saving of vulnerable people and those affected by disasters and crises and creating peace and friendship at international level. As a member of the International Federation of the Red Cross/Red Crescent Societies, the IRCS serves as an auxiliary to the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran in humanitarian fields such as disaster risk reduction, promotion of humanitarian laws and values, providing rescue, relief and medical services to the most vulnerable and disaster-affected people enjoying over 2 million active members and volunteers and 60,000 active relief workers responding to local and international emergencies.