A hackathon to find the best combination between Green Care and thermal wellness

5 minutes
Chapada dos Veadeiros (Goiás, Brazil) 2020, by Helena Leonel Ferreira

In recent years, there has been a growing interest in the health and wellness benefits provided by the interaction with natural environments. In this regard, the term “Green Care” refers to all those activities that use nature and its elements to promote health, well-being and social inclusion. These activities include, among others, forest bathing, social farming, horticulture and more. In addition, Green Care initiatives can represent an opportunity for business diversification, providing new resources for the sustainable management of natural resources and strengthening cross-sectoral cooperation and innovation. Although Green Care initiatives are a growing trend, they are still hampered by a lack of innovation, training opportunities, funding and formal recognition.

With the aim of finding innovative solutions to promote Green Care, the Green4C project organised six hackathons in six different European countries: Austria, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, and Romania. Each hackathon will address a specific local challenge, with the aim of finding concrete solution proposals by the end of the event.

In this context, the University of Padova and Etifor – in partnership with the Istituto Superiore di Sanità – have organised a hackathon aimed at finding innovative solutions to combine the benefits of Green Care in the Euganean Hills with the thermal offer of Abano-Montegrotto.

Abano-Montegrotto is a well-known thermal park particularly appreciated for the benefits of its springs and the quality of its services. At the same time, the thermal park is surrounded by beautiful woods and green areas, ideal places to host Green Care activities. However, to date there are still few Green Care initiatives in the Euganean Hills area.

Against this background, the aim of this competition is twofold. On the one hand wants to find solutions for integrating Green Care into the thermal offer of Abano-Montegrotto, with the aim of expanding the offer of wellness services for its visitors. On the other hand, the hackathon wants to innovate the offer of recreational and wellness services proposed by the operators of the Euganean Hills. This event also represents an opportunity to deepen one’s knowledge in Green Care while getting involved in a creative and problem-solving activity. During the event, participants will be supported by experts and mentors to better understand the context and its various critical issues. This hackathon is open to students, professionals, associations, and representatives of the public administration who are passionate about nature, health and well-being and are eager to get involved.

What is a hackathon?

A hackathon is a sprint-like event in which several teams compete to find the best solution to a specific problem. These types of events usually last between 12 and 24 hours, during which participants work non-stop. At the end of hackathons, each team must present a solution, which is then evaluated by an evaluation committee. This hackathon will last 12 hours. 

The challenges

This hackathon addresses two challenges; participants will have to choose only one to solve during the day.
Challenge 1: How can we expand the thermal offer of the Euganean Hills with Green Care? Which “green” initiative is most suitable and how can it be develop?
Challenge 2: Which Green Care initiatives could innovate and expand the services offered by the operators in the Euganean Hills? The Euganean Hills are a destination for local tourism, but not only! There are many operators (associations, cooperatives, private individuals) offering recreational services in nature for schools, families, young people, and tourists in general, but very few attempts are made to offer Green Care initiatives. The objective of the challenge is therefore to suggest an innovative idea that can be implemented to diversify services and make people rediscover the Hills. The Idee Verdi cooperative, which works locally with schools, families and associations, offering recreational services in nature, will bring its experience as a concrete example to work on.


In total, there will be two winning teams, one for each challenge. Each member of the winning team will receive a prize.
Challenge 1: a free entrance to the thermal park
Challenge 2: a book voucher of the value of 100€


The event will start at 9.15, with the check-in and welcome session.
This will be followed by some presentations by our experts, who will introduce the hackathon, the context of the Euganean Hills, and the main themes of the day: Blue and Green Care.
The morning will then be dedicated to the presentation of the challenges and mentors. In addition, participants will form their teams through gaming activities and then each team will start working on the chosen theme.
After a quick break for lunch, the teams will continue working on their project, which they will present to the jury in a 5-minute pitch. You don not know how to make a pitch? No problem, we will explain it to you!
The day will end with the award ceremony and a final toast.


When: 1st December 2022, from 09.00am to 09.00pm
Where: Casa per Ferie San Marco, Abano-Montegrotto, Padova
Language: Italian and English
Costs: free. Lunch, coffee and final aperitivo are included

Useful information

The hackathon venue can be reached by public transport. All timetables can be found on the Busitalia website.
We recommend the following buses departing from Padova bus station, lane 11:

  • Outward journey:
    Bus AT: 8.00 am
    Bus A: 8.30 am
  • Return journey:
    Bus: 21.30 (bus stop near the Casa per Ferie San Marco)

The journey time is approximately 50 minutes.