And the winning invention is…

In September 2023, Healthwatch Essex launched ‘Little Inventions for Big Change’, a brand new competition designed to encourage young people to share ideas and inventions which could help somebody living with a disability. The competition has come to a close and we now have a winner…

‘Little Inventions for Big Change’, a competition run in collaboration with Remap, was designed to help children and young people learn about disability, and encourage young minds to create unconstrained inventions. We received some brilliant ideas, and our panel of judges, made up of the most senior people in health and care across Essex, had a tough time picking the winner.

Marcy’s ‘Wooden Walking Stick With More’ invention.

It was 8-year-old Marcy who took the first-place prize with her invention of a ‘wooden walking stick with more’. The wooden walking stick features a cup and food holder, shopping basket, phone holder, and a notebook. Marcy created this invention was created for people who need a walking aid, she says she designed it “so people don’t need to carry so much at once”. For creating the winning invention, Marcy was awarded a £200 voucher to be used at her school, alongside a £50 voucher for herself.

We also had two runners-up, both receiving £50 Amazon vouchers for their inventions. In second-place, 6-year-old Max created a device that could be used to help people with hearing impairments, he said that it would allow them to “answer the door through a text message to their phone”.

And in third, it was 10-year-old Riley’s invention, which was created to “help people concentrate in school”. He explained that, as someone living with autism, a fidget toy style invention such as his would help people interact and focus better during lessons.

Dan Potts, Engagement Manager, ran the competition and says: ‘Young people are so creative and some of the best ideas or inventions have started from the minds of children. We have enjoyed giving young people a voice at Healthwatch Essex and we feel it’s important to allow their ideas to be shared and expressed in a way they deem suitable. This competition is proof, and we were very impressed with the ideas and designs created by the young participants.’

The competition received an excellent response from schools and community groups, and we would like to say thank you to all the young people who got involved and shared their inventions!