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ÏDKIDS employees get stuck into Maker Faire Lille

From 9 to 11 February employees from ÏDKIDS community brands took part in this world-class innovation event at Le Tripostal in Lille. Find out what they made of it!

The Maker Faire aims to stimulate curiosity, inspire through the work of others and share ideas with the hope of encouraging young and old alike to make a difference. ÏDKIDS was keen to participate in this event in line with its We Act For Kids ethos of putting children in the driver’s seat, developing their talents, building their confidence and sharing ideas within a responsible, sustainable community.

For three days (including Friday, for schoolchildren only) representatives from Okaïdi and Oxybul shared their expertise and organized ‘play and learn’ workshops on the themes of upcycling textiles (how to recycle old jeans and T-shirts and give them a new lease of life) and making small cars out of reclaimed materials. N’Joy staff were also there to help visitors, particularly children, explore the different workshops and stands at the event.

All in all 11,000 visitors, 2,200 of them schoolchildren, navigated the three storeys of Le Tripostal to explore a wealth of innovative, fun, creative and responsible ideas. It was also an online success with 4,500 likes on Facebook and 98,000 visits to the event website!

The many visitors to the ÏDKIDS stand enjoyed making new discoveries, sharing ideas and laughing together, encouraging the very youngest among them to be imaginative and creative while having fun. We’d like to thank everyone who came to cut, sew, glue, weld, saw, hum, play music and be MAKERS for the day!

  • Perrine, project leader: “I really enjoyed arranging for the brands in our community to take part in this event which was fully in line with our values and mission. I loved the dynamic, the abundance of ideas, the creativity the event inspired, and the energy surrounding our stand where at times we were almost run off our feet by eager children wanting to make things! As a mum to 5- and 7-year-old girls, it was great to see my children moving so enthusiastically from one workshop to the next and getting involved in sewing and welding. For me, Maker Faire Lille is the first step in a great partnership between ÏDKIDS and maker culture!”

Our staff had fun too!

  • Mathilde, Oxybul quality manager:This event ties in very nicely with our aims and initiatives. It puts children in the driver’s – or maker’s – seat by encouraging them to do things for themselves, extend themselves and see that they are capable of coming up with practical solutions. It’s also a great opportunity for two-way communication. I was surprised by some of the children’s ingenuity, perseverance and creativity. You have to adapt the level of technical complexity and your language to suit individual children, not just based on their age but the skills and knowledge they possess.”
  • Melinda, Okaïdi Euralille store manager: “As someone who is naturally curious, I wanted to open myself up to new experiences outside of the store environment. My everyday job requires me to keep our customers happy, whatever their age. And at the Maker Faire I met children and even parents who were thrilled by the workshops we offered. It made me proud to belong to a community that invests in projects like these. It was also an opportunity to communicate important values like keeping waste to a minimum while having fun. Make sure you come to the next one! I can guarantee you’ll have an unforgettable day filled with fun and laughter!”

  • Isabelle, ÏDKIDS community CSR manager: “My children are used to making things from reclaimed objects and loved taking part in the first Maker Faire in 2016. It’s been really interesting following the maker movement. It first started in the US and has inspired a number of startups offering innovative solutions. Innovating and using new technologies as part of the circular economy is fully in line with the goals of We Act For Kids. Our planet’s resources are limited and insufficient to meet the demands of a growing population. We have to find alternative solutions that better respect the environment. We can take inspiration from what the makers are doing to develop our business model in a more positive, sustainable way. With so many children and parents attending this half-day event, it was a great opportunity to meet new people. Like any experience, whether personal or professional, the starting point is an open discussion and a willingness to work together while taking respective abilities, values and needs into account. And this good-natured, friendly environment is a great place to do it. Take the plunge and register! Step out of your comfort zone and surprise yourself – you’ll be overjoyed when you see the happy smiles on your children’s faces as they make, create and invent.”
  • Céline, Oxybul quality manager: “The Maker Faire is different from anything else. I wanted to learn more about the maker movement and discover some innovative initiatives. I wanted to take part in these ÏDKIDS workshops so I could be in touch with the children’s creativity, encourage them to get making and spend some quality time outside of the office with my colleagues. The workshops bring out the best in children by fostering sharing, creativity and dexterity. They were very focused and proud of their creations. The event adds a element of open-mindedness to the concept of making, from creating objects and using specific techniques to sharing information and ideas as a community.”

The event on video

  • Hélène, themed mini-break manager at N’Joy:It was the concept behind the event that made me want to take part – developing themes like creativity, making and innovation. All perfectly in tune with the attributes of N’Joy. We use several different teaching approaches in our educational experiences and holidays, always taking account of the children’s ability to create, learn, imagine and express themselves. The Maker Faire gave us some great ideas for our innovative educational experiences. The various stands confirmed that our ideas were on the right track and in line with current trends and even gave us some new inspiration. As I have personally committed to a zero waste lifestyle at home, I was able to gather new information and food for thought to take my DIY approach to the next level. This event is as suitable for adults as it is for families! All interests are catered for including gardening, home improvement and technology. There’s something for everyone! It’s a fun way to spend time while learning something new.

  • Marine, head of internal relations:Besides the fact that the Maker Faire is a fun and appealing event, it makes a lot of sense. It helps show children that you can make things yourself and that it takes hard work and resources to create an object before it goes on sale in a shop. It’s also a very tangible way to show children that used objects can have a second life. An object that was once seen as waste can become something else – something completely new. That’s brilliant! The event is fully in line with the goals of We Act For Kids and our brands’ missions. Oxybul springs to mind with its mission of ‘bringing out the best in every child’. What could be more satisfying than creating something with your own hands? Okaïdi’s mission is also taken care of with its upcycling workshop. Here children can learn about respecting the environment in a pleasant, sharing atmosphere. We Act For Kids is alive and well at this type of event through the work of our brands! It’s an opportunity to open your mind to new technologies that children are virtually born into. It’s amazing to see how natural they find it all!”

  • Laure, retail coordinator for partner countries: “I took part in the 2017 Maker Faire and I loved it! All the creativity and innovations really open your mind. It also gets you thinking about what our environment will be like in a few years’ time. Today’s children are the ones who will be directly impacted by current innovations. As a company working for and with children, we have a role to play in raising their awareness and developing their creativity. Just like last year, the event bowled me over! It was interesting to see how some of the projects had evolved. The projects shown at the Maker Faire are always very varied and make you want to try them for yourself. I always go home full of ideas and energy! Whether or not you’ve got children, it’s a must-do!”
  •  Ayélé, N’Joy activity leader:I had a great time. It was so much fun and the activity leaders all formed a strong bond from the beginning. This experience made me want to take part in other Maker Faires. I discovered new ways of doing things that I had never heard of. It was extremely rewarding!”
  • Elodie, N’Joy activity leader: “I only have good things to say about these three days of very positive interaction. We found our feet and got organized very quickly. It flowed well and the event was lively and dynamic. I really enjoyed taking part, particularly because of the values it represents. I would be delighted to represent N’Joy at other Maker Faires in different cities.”
  • Charly, N’Joy activity leader:All very positive, especially having the chance to meet other colleagues! And everyone enjoyed the workshops. I’m glad I got to be part of the events world.”
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