Our Apps for Good team ‘Konnekt’ has not only beaten over 600 schools from across the country to be announced as Finalists in the national Apps for Good Awards 2015 but they have also walked away with the ‘School of the Year’ and ‘People’s Choice’ awards.
The national Apps for Good Awards celebrate the next generation of problem solvers and digital makers: young people who are creating apps to change their world for good. This year, 18 finalist teams were selected from over 600 that competed for the chance to have their app developed and launched on the market.
The Denbigh team created an app for young carers. The app is called ‘Who Cares?’ and it is designed to help young carers by connecting them with other young carers, enabling them to access support, form friendships and share their concerns and worries. It helps them to feel connected and not alone in a world which, for many, can seem like a lonely and desperate place.
A survey carried out in 2010 by the BBC estimated that there are 700,000 young carers in the UK and the students’ research has shown that there is not an app for young carers within the UK and therefore their app fills a gap in the market. The app has also received a lot of positive feedback and support from organisations like Young Carers Bedfordshire and the Carers Trust who support nearly 30,000 young carers.
The awards ceremony took place on Thursday 18th June at the Barbican in London and before the winners were announced the students had to undergo a number of final challenges. They were asked to deliver a ‘Dragon’s Den’ style pitch to seven Dragons including senior staff from Heathrow Airport and the BBC. They then had to man a stand and present their product to many business people over a period of two hours. Visitors to their stand included the Head of Technology for the Guardian, the winner of the 2012 series of ‘The Apprentice’ and senior staff from Google and Thomson Reuters amongst many others.
As winners of ‘The People’s Choice’ award the students will now have their app professionally produced and launched onto the market. The company producing their app is called Gourmet Pixel and they produce apps for organisations that include Virgin, Rolls Royce and Audi. The App will then be launched on either the App Store or Google Play store in 2016.
Denbigh’s Director of Technology for Learning, Mrs Emma Darcy, said;
"The Apps for Good programme has been an amazing experience for the pupils who took part this year. For the ‘Who Cares?’ team to win the People's Choice award and for the school to win the School of the Year award is fantastic recognition of the teamwork, resilience and creativity of all those involved."
Colin Townsend, Acting Principal at Denbigh High School, commented;
“Apps for Good enables us to develop students’ skills in teamwork, problem solving and communication and build their confidence and character. The Apps for Good programme has encouraged our students to explore technology and use it to solve problems they care about. We are incredibly proud of the students behind "Who Cares?" and we are delighted that they have won these awards."