VSCIC Children Innovation Centre

The Vikram Sarabhai Children Innovation Centre (VSCIC) was launched today in a virtual ceremony organised by Gujarat University Startup and Entrepreneurship Council (GUSEC), under the aegis of Gujarat University, with the support of UNICEF and Yuwaah. The Centre is projected to identify, nurture and support innovations by children in the state of Gujarat.

The Centre was launched in the presence of M Nagarajan, IAS, Director, Higher Education, Govt. of Gujarat; Jalpa Ratna, Chief of Field Services, UNICEF India; Jitendra Vijayvargiya, CEO, MeitY Startup Hub (MSH) Govt. of India; Prasanta Dash, Chief, UNICEF Gujarat; Prof Himanshu Pandya, Vice-Chancellor, Gujarat University; Dr Jagdish Bhavsar, Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Gujarat University; Moira Dawa, Communication, Advocacy & Partnership Specialist, UNICEF and Rahul Bhagchandani, Group CEO, GUSEC; along with officials of Gujarat University, GUSEC and UNICEF.

The VSCIC is envisioned to take GUSEC, UNICEF and Yuwaah’s efforts in children innovation a step further and is being established after the quantified success of two editions of the Children Innovation Festival which collectively brought more than 3100 children in the fold of innovation. The following are the key activities planned under the VSCIC:
  • Developing an online platform for the promotion of innovation amongst children and various stakeholders such as school teachers and parents
  • Engaging and supporting ideas by children innovators on a rolling basis through the Vikram Sarabhai Incubator of Ideas
  • Creation and amplification of inspiring stories of children innovators
  • Implementation and delivery of a MOOC for children on innovation, design thinking and entrepreneurship
  • Introduction of an in-person immersion program for school students, teachers and parents
  • Capacity building of school teachers, principals and academicians on innovation and entrepreneurship development
  • Partner with organisations to expand the reach of the VSCIC to children outside the formal education system.
M Nagarajan, IAS, Director, Higher Education, Govt. of Gujarat, delivered the keynote address during the event. “This is a time for us to enable a generation of problem solvers, a society where local youth solve local problems using local resources. The VSCIC is a big leap forward in that direction, giving children access to the real world, and enforcing belief in the idea that anyone can innovate,” he said in the keynote.

Delivering a Special Address during the inaugural event, Jalpa Ratna, Chief of Field Services, UNICEF India, pointed to the enormous potential of the large global youth population and said, “In Gujarat, nearly 30 percent of the population of 60 million is aged 10-24 years. In a world exacerbated by the pandemic, the Centre will not only create mass awareness on innovation, entrepreneurship, SDGs, child rights, 21st-century skills, career guidance among school children in India but it will also create dialogue and discussion with stakeholders to gather key inputs on current curriculum for policy-level interventions. It shall help their transition to real-world learning and help them become active citizens.”

Speakers in Virtual Ceremony of VSCIC

Applauding the move, Jitendra Vijayvargiya, CEO, MeitY Startup Hub of Ministry of Electronics and IT, said, "The children of today shall inherit the India of tomorrow. We’re witnessing a cultural shift where we do not celebrate our athletes and Bollywood actors, but unicorns and innovators. People have lived in a constrained framework of mind, but today, they’re not hesitant to create their own future which is synonymous with what our honourable Prime Minister has stated - the problem is not in the mind, but in the mindset."

Prasanta Das, UNICEF Gujarat Chief spoke about the accomplishments of UNICEF, GU and GUSEC’s synergetic alliance and the importance of empowering children innovation in the state. He said, “UNICEF is committed to ensuring all children have a right to survive, thrive and fulfil their potential – to the benefit of a better world. And the establishment of the Vikram Sarabhai Children Innovation Centre is a step in that direction. I wish you the very best as you move ahead in your journey of innovation and entrepreneurship.”

Prof Himanshu Pandya, Vice-Chancellor, Gujarat University said, “Named after Dr Vikram Sarabhai, a Gujarat University alumnus who put India on the world space exploration map, the VSCIC shall develop a network between school children and innovation; we aim to produce at least ten products out of the VSCIC.”

Rahul Bhagchandani, Group CEO, GUSEC said, “The Vikram Sarabhai Children Innovation Centre is the result of years of partnership between GUSEC, UNICEF and YuWaah as well as the massive interest we have seen from young kids who want to innovate and solve challenges of the country.”


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