The global refugee crisis is ongoing and continues to grow with every conflict. With limited basic resources and abilities, refugees face uncertain futures and struggle to lead secure lives. From here, the "Design Solutions for Refugees Challenge" program was launched.

Motivated by humanitarian efforts to alleviate hardships that have altered the course of countless lives, Tanween presents an opportunity through its mega challenge for innovators from all over the world to provide solutions that address this global crisis by creating sustainable and empowering solutions that improve the quality of life of refugees inside camps around the world. The Mega Challenge targets three tracks in need of innovative solutions: Education, Food Security, and Power.



Upon participating in Tanween’s Mega Challenge, you’ll gain access to a variety of advantages and benefits, such as:

  • Create positive social impact and contribute to the well-being of vulnerable communities. 
  • Showcase their abilities, creativity, and problem-solving skills.
  • Receive valuable feedback along with expert advice and guidance
  • Expanding their professional networks regionally and internationally
  • Participants will collaborate with like-minded individuals
  • Successful participation can generate significant exposure and visibility



Education is a fundamental human right—an essential aspect of development that plays a critical role in shaping an individual’s life by providing the necessary knowledge and skills to navigate the world and make informed decisions. Refugees often face significant challenges that hinder their ability to learn and develop intellectually, leading to educational stagnation.

In this track, participants will innovate solutions that support the educational needs of refugees, taking into consideration their new living conditions and culture. They are encouraged to ideate novel approaches that empower refugees of various age groups to learn and develop, enhancing their intellect and their life skills.


2.Food Security:

Proper nutrition is essential for the maintenance of good health, as it provides the necessary foundation for growth, immunity, and cognitive development. Unfortunately, refugees often face challenges in obtaining adequate nutrition due to their limited access to food and poor living conditions. In addition, the lack of access to clean drinking water further exacerbates the situation, as it poses a significant risk to their health.

This track aims to find a safe and sustainable solution to achieve food security for refugees—providing reliable access to affordable and nutritious food in quantities sufficient enough for them to lead active, healthy lives. Participants in this challenge will propose design tools that empower refugees and alleviate feelings of helplessness.

2.Food Security:


Insufficient power in refugees’ camps can have devastating impacts on their safety and wellbeing. It also hinders the aspirations of refugees who wish to improve their quality of life by using energy-dependent machinery.

This track aims to elevate the quality of life for refugees by designing solutions that help address their day-to-day struggles. Participants will ideate novel tools that will be usable by refugees when needed through employing sustainable energy sources, thus ensuring that the end product fulfills the needs of refugees and caters to their reality.

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What is the challenge of designing and creating solutions for refugees?

It is a challenge that provides a chance for creators and innovators to present solutions and creative ideas that would enhance the quality of life within refugee camps all over the world through three different tracks: education, food security and energy.

Can I participate with an old idea and develop it further during the challenge?

No, all ideas must be original.

I do not have an academic or professional background in design, can I still participate in the challenges?

Yes, you do not have to be a designer or an engineer or a field expert to be able to participate, as it targets all creators and those who hold interest in the matter. If one of the available tracks is among your interests, then you can register in the challenge.

Who is eligible to participate in the challenge?

o   Any creator who is interested in one of the available tracks.

o   Participants must be 20 years old or older.

Is participating in designing and creating solutions for refugees challenge available for non-Saudis?

Yes, anyone can join the challenge.

Where will the challenge be located?

The challenge will be held in Dhahran at the King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture (Ithra).

Is there a fee for joining this challenge?

No, participation in this challenge is free.

Can we participate as a team?

No, teams will be formed during the challenge and not in advance.

What will I gain from joining the challenge?

Participants will get to work closely with field experts across all of our available tracks and benefit from their expertise, as well as work with a group of creatives from different backgrounds, which will in turn improve your skills relating to creativity and innovation.

What will I get if I win the challenge?

The winning participant will get the chance to develop your idea and potentially implement it with the support of our executive partners. It could become a reality that reaches and helps refugees in need.

Implementation is not guaranteed.

I registered but still have not received the confirmation message yet, what should I do?

The Ithra team goes over each application as soon as you have registered, and you will receive a confirmation message if you are selected.

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