Around the world, there is inequality in the health of young children. In Lamu, an archipelago in northeastern Kenya, economic, social and geographical barriers play a role in access to healthcare, which does not help the health of young children in the first thousand days of their lives. For some communities, reaching the nearest hospital is an eight-hour boat ride, or requires a hundreds-of-dollars speedboat ride. This results in parents with their newborn children often not seeking help until it is almost too late.
My name is Wessel Veenkamp and for my graduation project for the Msc. Integrated Product Design I will work on this problem, as part of a new initiative between TU Delft, Erasmus MC and Erasmus EUR called Healthy Start, which aims to give all children an equal healthy start in life. The aim of my project is to find new opportunities for technology and innovation that give young children a better starting position for a healthy life. First, I will identify health challenges during pregnancy and during the first thousand days of life. Then, during fieldwork with a wide variety of stakeholders in Lamu, I will explore where the problems and opportunities lie and how technology can be used, eventually designing and testing concept solutions.
Students4Sustainability is helping me in the project with costs incurred during the prototyping of new solutions, adding to the quality of the project!