Some of you may know Jeroen as coach in Mechelen, as jury during the latest Coolest Projects in Lier or maybe even through his Youtube channel 'Code Teacher'. Last June he participates in Coolest Projects in Ireland and wins the first prize in the 'Future Makers' category with the 'Welcome Here' app!

One thing leads to another…
By the time that runs his last years at junior school, his dad signs him up for CoderDojo. After a short time on the waiting list, the boy can get started at the dojo in Technopolis Mechelen. In the meantime, the student of Economics Mathematics has been coach in Mechelen and Lier since 2 years. The waiting list put him on the idea of creating a YouTube channel with the base of coding: Code Teacher was born. "The young people on the waiting list can already learn the basics of encoding through the channel. Moreover, the channel support the CliniCoders: children who stay in the hospital for a long time learn at their own pace”, said the young entrepreneur. The most watched video 'How do you make minecraft fireworks' has over 5000 views!

Not only you can learn the base of Scratch, you will also discover new gadgets tried out, explained and judged by Code Teacher. "When I receive new gadgets from international producers targeting the Benelux market, I test and review these." Among the nearly 1500 followers, a small Code Teacher community is created by young encoder enthusiasts. In September, Code Teacher will even launch its own clothing line! Check out the channel here:

A trip to Ireland!
After his exam on Friday, the 15-year-old goes to Ireland to participate in Coolest Projects. The Irish press is soon interviewing him about his app that he presents in the category Future Makers. A nice experience at a fair that is a lot bigger than in Belgium, with different departments in which dozens of young people present their project. Within the category Future Makers, the ninjas develop a social impact project, such as the Welcome Here app, to help refugees in our country. Jeroen is overwhelmed to go home with the first prize in his category.

A few months in advance, Jeroen takes part in Future Makers, a contest aimed at innovative and creative solutions to social problems. He is inspired by the huge media attention for stranded refugees, but to develop an app with that content in only 3 weeks is rather short. Nevertheless, the creative teenager put some things together and is surprised to ends up in the top 5! More reason to expand the application even more, as in 4 months Coolest Projects in Ireland will take place.

Welcome what?
Welcome Here is based on checklists and guides the refugees in finding shelter, food and clothing. But Jeroen thinks beyond the emergency solutions, he aims at integrating the user by information concerning sports and cultural activities, the environment and tools to find a job. He hopes to work out a website to example of the app, so people without smartphone can still have access in a public place. "The app itself has been built quickly, but the content requires a lot of time and research. I received assistance from, among others, the Flemish Refugee Network and was approached by another body involved in refugees and integration. I hope these organizations will help me expand the content", said the promising developer.

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