Loneliness (international) students

Youth loneliness education

How can we, together with those concerned, ensure that (international) students feel less lonely (Post Corona)? That this question is relevant hardly needs explanation. During the Corona pandemic, it turned out that not only the elderly felt lonely, but also young people – especially if they are here from another country as a student or PhD candidate. All kinds of initiatives have been developed for this target group, but rarely with them. To prevent them from being left out the next time, we want to tackle this issue with that target group.

About this challenge

Learning circle loneliness young people


This was one of the challenges addressed in the first nano-challenge, on ‘post-Corona issues’.

Three mixed groups of students worked on it. The solutions they presented can be seen below, both in the form of a ‘one minute pitch’ and the presentation that the two teams put together.

The presented solutions were fed back to the client, who used them for, among other things, their own hackathon in Hengelo – which also highlighted the need for their own ‘place’. In the development of the creative breeding ground Oogst in Hengelo, efforts are being made to make room for this.

Nevertheless, the issue cannot be solved with just one place. Do the examples below inspire you? Please do not hesitate to contact us if you would like to work on it further.

The Results

During nano-challenge #1, three teams worked on the issue of how we can identify more loneliness in young people, and what we could do about it (with them). The three solutions that were devised for this are shown below. These solutions were also discussed in the D’RAN Digital Talk Show, and guests responded to them. You can watch that talk show here.

Team 1 was looking for ways to be able to do something together in these times of Corona, without having to leave your home. They toyed with the idea of a ‘game night’, but the idea they worked out was the joint Saturday afternoon lunch, where everyone who wants to join in receives the same ingredients – and where you prepare and eat the same lunch at the same time via a video link. Lunch together, but alone. Below you can see the presentation of this team, as well as the video pitch they made.

Team 2 preferred physical encounters, but not just for lonely young people, but for everyone. Central to their idea is ‘Come Alone’: a call to go somewhere (a ‘secret’ place), alone, to do an activity there and meet other people who have come alone. Below you can see their presentation and pitch.

Team 3 started from the idea: “Hey, I have that too!” The concept they developed is called ‘Same’: an app/platform where you get to know students online with similar characteristics or interests, supplemented by a physical place where you can meet. Intended for students who are looking for more contacts and who find it difficult to build a network. How it works? You can see that below.


‘Same’ app. This can be realized by offering the idea as a project to Computer Science students or as a HBO graduation assignment. As a result, more research is done among the target group and students get the chance to make something tangible. The only obstacles are keeping costs low, the location of the activities and the corona measures.