Play to create was the theme of this year’s LEGO® Idea Conference held in Denmark this week. More than 300 people attended the one-day session organised by the LEGO Idea House and The LEGO Foundation – whose aim is to inspire the builders of tomorrow.
Randa Grob-Zakhary, CEO of The LEGO Foundation kicked off the event talking about how we can apply creativity to the world’s biggest challenges. She said that creativity is about openness to new ideas and tolerance of ambiguity, not just about the arts.
Other speakers included Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu, founder of soleRebels in Addis Ababa in Ethiopia, who talked about innovating the future by embracing the past, and Kiran Bir Sethi, founder of the Riverside School in Gujarat in India, who spoke of empowering children to be agents of change.
The day ended with the award of the 2013 LEGO Prize which was given to Right To Play CEO Johann Koss.
Right To Play is a global organisation that uses play to educate and empower children facing adversity. The LEGO Prize carries a $100,000 prize and is awarded to individuals and institutions that have made an extraordinary contribution on behalf of children and young people.
“Johann Koss is awarded the LEGO Prize 2013 as recognition of the tremendous impact he has had on children’s lives through his organization, Right To Play,” says Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen, Chairman of the LEGO Foundation and principal shareholder of the family-owned LEGO Group.
“Since 1993 he has been dedicated to helping vulnerable and disadvantaged children and young people to a better future using play and sport as a tool for education and health. Right To Play has shared values and overlapping aims with The LEGO Foundation that works to equip and empower children to build a better tomorrow for themselves and their communities through higher quality learning experiences.”
Right To Play reaches one million children through weekly play activities across more than 20 countries. The organisation’s programs use specially-designed games and play-based learning activities to help children build the essential life skills that will help them better their futures and drive lasting social change.
“Play is not a luxury,” says Koss. “Every child has the right to play, not only because it is fun, but because it is critical to their education and healthy development. We share that belief and commitment to children’s well-being with The LEGO Foundation and The LEGO Group, which has been providing children with play material that help them learn and grow for more than 80 years. It is a great honour to have Right To Play’s work recognised by such an iconic play brand and we are very grateful for this prize.”