29 Jun New ‘Minecraft’ mission builds healthy communities one block at a time
Monash University and VicHealth have collaborated to create “Kids Building Future Healthy,” an educational edition of Minecraft aimed at children between the ages of 9 and 12.
This unique initiative encourages children to design communities in the game where people are connected, physically active, and have access to healthy food options. The mission will launch on July 10th, allowing students to act as community health researchers and neighbourhood designers.
Through the Minecraft Education Edition, participants will explore the Future Healthy World and gather information on various ways to address health issues within their communities. The ultimate goal is for children to design and construct their ideal Future Healthy World. Deana Leahy, an Associate Professor at Monash University, explains that the project aims to provide an opportunity for young students to learn about health and engage in the process of finding solutions.
The project recognizes the significance of youth-led ideas and solutions in addressing health challenges, as today’s students will be tomorrow’s adults. By involving children in local research and incorporating their perspectives, this initiative aims to foster creativity and teamwork while empowering young individuals to play an active role in designing healthier communities. The program has already been welcomed by some schools and teachers who see it as a valuable resource for promoting engagement and sparking students’ creativity.
VicHealth CEO Dr Sandro Demaio emphasizes the importance of combining physical and digital environments to promote good health among the younger generation. “Kids Building Future Healthy” encourages children to envision a healthy future and learn about health through creative means. Students will have the opportunity to design and construct their Future Healthy World, where people are connected, physically active, and enjoy wholesome foods. These innovative designs will be showcased on the VicHealth website, allowing the community and decision-makers to consider them prototypes for creating a healthier and fairer future. The top three builds will even have the chance to present their ideas to local government leaders.
The “Kids Building Future Healthy” initiative is part of VicHealth’s Future Healthy program, which involves a $45 million investment over three years to support the well-being of young people aged 0-25 and their families in Victoria. This collaboration between Monash University, VicHealth, and Minecraft Education Edition aims to engage children in the process of designing healthier communities and provide a platform for their voices to be heard in shaping the future.
To learn more and join the Kids Building Future Healthy Minecraft mission, please visit: kidsfuturehealthy.com.au/