The Western Australian government has announced the final call for submissions to the inaugural Innovation Challenge, which will close this Tuesday (Feb 1).
Under the program, WA innovators pitch and compete for up to $1.5 million in developing and implementing an innovative solution that addresses a major child and mental health issue.
Announced in Mental Health Week 2021, the program aligns with the ‘mental health starts with children’ theme of last year’s Mental Health Week.
The proposals will be provided with funding on a competitive basis by demonstrating the potential to develop and implement new process, services or products relevant to this area. The solution must also result in disruptive and transformative change.
10 applicants will be awarded up to $50,000 towards feasibility studies or/and the building of prototypes.
One solution will be awarded up to $1.5 million on the proviso to fully develop and implement the solution in WA.
The program hopes to stimulate innovation while delivering a solution to an unmet need in the area of child and youth (0-24 years) mental health in WA.
Fund to drive medical innovation
The initiative came about after the need for solutions was identified by the Western Australian Future Health Research and Innovation Fund Advisory Council.
Established in 2020, the fund aims to provide a stable source of funding to drive medical research and health innovation that ultimately improves the wellbeing of Western Australians.
“I am excited to see what innovative solutions WA’s best and brightest may come up with,” said the Medical Research, Innovation and ICT minister, Stephen Dawson.
The Innovation Challenge will be vital in improving health promotion and treatment for younger Western Australians.
“The Future Health Research and Innovation Fund delivers upon the McGowan Government’s election commitment to grow local jobs, attract more research projects and retain WA’s brightest health and medical researchers and innovators.”
Submissions are to be submitted by 1pm on Tuesday.