DOING IT FOR THE KIDS: DESIGN STUDENTS PARTICIPATE IN WEEKEND HACKATHON FOR KIDS HELPLINE

kids helpline hackathon

Despite the end of trimester for students at Billy Blue College of Design at Torrens University Australia in Ultimo (which, for many, means looming deadlines), they still jumped at the opportunity to participate in a weekend hackathon for Kids Helpline Australia.

And what budding entrepreneur wouldn’t make time in their schedule for the chance to pitch an idea to the likes of Facebook, Optus, Google, SBS Australia and Nickelodeon?!

THE CHALLENGE

demo kids helpline hackathon

On the Friday night, 30 students congregated at the Ultimo campus for the launch event and to familiarise themselves with the brief: to develop and storyboard a fundraising concept for Kids Helpline.

Over the course of the weekend they were to work in teams harnessing digital and social media to create a model of revenue generation that could change people’s perceptions of charities and overcome charity fatigue.

The grand finale? Come Sunday, students presented their concept to a panel of industry experts; Fred Le Tran from Optus, Sam Yorke from Google, Ben Naparstek from SBS, Mia Garlick from Facebook and Jordana Kirby from Nickelodeon.

DOING IT FOR THE KIDS

Kids Helpline started over 26 years ago launching as a telephone support service for children and young adults in Australia aged 5-18 and has since broadened its support to include up to 25-year-olds. A Kids Helpline spokesperson shared that ‘since Kids Helpline started, more than seven-and-a-half million responses have been made’.

But with running costs far exceeding the funding that they receive from the government, donations are key to Kids Helpline. ‘We need to keep building our funding base so that we can do all the things that we know will make a difference in the lives of young people’.

And that’s where the creative energy of our students comes in.

AND THE WINNERS ARE…

hackathon winners

The winning group – made up of students Callum Templeman, Casey Lil Simpson and Lorena Couto – designed a robust membership service called Give 2 Get. Their concept was to create a membership service that provides an incentive to donate on a weekly basis to Kids Helpline, in return for discounts and experiences. It impressed the judges, who commented that they loved the prototype, with its strong design, appeal to a young audience and its exclusive club concept.

The students were awarded a monetary prize for their efforts, and a reciprocal donation was made to Kids Helpline.

DEGREES THAT WORK AND DOING SOCIAL GOOD

We’re all about #degreesthatwork; connecting our students with industry, giving them live briefs and real-world experience. But most of all, this event was yet another powerful affirmation that Laureate and Torrens are Here for Good. Partnering with Kids Helpline means that our students can make a difference to the lives of children and young adults all over Australia.

A huge thank you to everyone who participated and congratulations to our winners!