WRO is delighted to announce that our National Organizer for Panama and the host of the 2023 International Final, FUNDESTEAM, has been granted the status of Regional Representative for the Latin American region. This is a pilot of a new initiative for WRO that, if successful, will see significantly more young people benefiting from participating in WRO across Central and South America and the Caribbean. The aim for 2023 is to have teams from all countries in the Americas compete at WRO 2023.

The idea of Regional Representative was conceived following Panama winning the role of host of the International Final for 2023. One of the intentions of holding the International Final in a particular country is to stimulate further interest in technology and engineering amongst young people and to grow WRO the host country and its region.

As part of FUNDESTEAM’s efforts to secure and deliver the International Final and to use the event to nurture WRO growth they wished to pilot new initiatives in STEM skills develop and introduce starter concepts to make it easier for new teams and younger children to get involved. As Panama is a relatively small country the best way to see such growth and development will be by working with other nearby National Organizers.

The role of Regional Representative does not replace the link between National Organizers and the Association. It is a supportive and coordinating role that seeks to bring National Organizers in the region closer together; to find opportunities to work together and share ideas and best practices; to help new National Organizers to get started and to achieve results quickly; secure new sponsors; and, in countries where there is not a National Organizer already, to identify and engage suitable candidates.

It has been agreed that FUNDESTEAM will pilot the Regional Representative model for the 2023 and 2024 WRO seasons and together we have an ambitious target: teams from all countries in the Americas will compete at WRO 2023.