Celebrating #AfG5years: ‘Apps for Good has shaped my life’

Throughout the 2015/16 academic year we’re celebrating Apps for Good’s 5th birthday. In our first five years the Apps for Good course has been delivered to over 50,000 students in over 1,000 schools.

At our recent App Launch, where we officially kicked off our birthday celebrations, we got a chance to chat speak with some of Fellows who shared their favourite things about Apps for Good.

Fellows Harriet, Katie, Jashvanth & Habibah discussed had lots of positive things to say about their experiences of the course, with Katie describing the course as having ‘shaped my life’ be helping her to discover a love of coding. You can hear more about what they had to say in the video below!

Do you have a favourite Apps for Good moment from our first five years? Share it with us on Twitter using #AfG5years.

Changing the world in a T-Shirt, Zuckerberg style

Rachel Moseley, Senior Manager, Corporate Responsibility at Thomson Reuters reflects on the Apps for Good App Launch. 

What happens when you give young people the intelligence (data and insights), technology and human expertise to think differently, innovate, and solve a social problem?

You get seven mobile apps, developed for market, launched on the Google Play Store and celebrated at an inspiring event at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London.

You see 23 young people, aged 12-18 who have achieved something incredible whilst still studying at school.

These young technologists are changing the world, and we witnessed that change once again at the Apps for Good App Launch on Thursday 4 February. Their products are a reflection of their passions and an awful lot of hard work. By looking at the community and world that they live in, their apps look to solve a real need – whether it’s educating young people on the political landscape or ensuring that young carers have the support and resources they need at their fingertips – looking at the world through the lens of a young person really does alter your perspective.

Thomson Reuters is so proud to be involved with Apps for Good, this charity has in its five years seen incredible impacts that go beyond traditional education. Increasing IT awareness is key, but it’s the other skills developed in these young people that are the most touching – presentation skills, social skills, confidence and increases in their own aspirations. What’s more you are seeing a gender balance on the Apps for Good program, that you don’t see reflected in the technology sector. A 50/50 engagement across male and female pupils taking part – that’s amazing! The 50,000 pupils who have taken part in the course to date are from varying backgrounds, abilities and locations, yet their viewpoints and opinions matter more than you can imagine.

These young technologists, brimming with ideas and passion, shared that the thing they want from Apps for Good is respect. Respect of those ideas, of that passion and that their opinions matter.

Are they getting it? Mohima Ahmed was one of the first pupils to take part in the Apps for Good course and entered the awards with an App that offered translation for Bengali families living in the UK. She has taken her passions for problem solving and technology to University and is finishing her third year studying Biomedical Engineering, as well as being a trustee of Apps for Good. She was also named last year as one of the Top 30 Women Under 30 Who are Changing the World, aged 20.

Mohima_AppLaunch2016

‘We love Apps for Good, because we get the same level of respect as Mark Zuckerberg’ – Mohima Ahmed

Do you fancy getting involved with Apps for Good? Inspiring the next generation of technologists, and in turn learning so much more about the world we live in and the technology at our fingertips?

Then why not sign up to be an Apps for Good Expert and start by volunteering just one hour of your time. At Thomson Reuters we give all regular employees 16 hours a year to volunteer, as part of our commitment to Corporate Responsibility & Inclusion.

 

App Launch 2016 – an evening of celebration

Last Thursday was an exciting day at Apps for Good as we gathered at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park for App Launch 2016. The event marked the launch of Assemble Jobs, BOOKd, GardenKing, MySoundClash, My World of Atoms, One Click Politics and weKonnekt on the market.

weKonnekt_AppLaunch

Team weKonnekt from Denbigh High School with Bob Schukai of Thomson Reuters

At the event the teams presented their problem solving apps, tackling a wide range of issues such as help for young carers, helping get teens tuned into politics and helping students to master the periodic table, to the public. If you want to learn more about the teams and download the apps, head over to our website.

MySoundClasj_AppLaunch

The team behind MySoundClash from Latymer Upper School at the App Launch on Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

This year’s App Launch was particularly special as we also kicked off our 5th birthday celebrations, with students, Fellows, Experts, teachers & corporate partners sharing their favourite Apps for Good memories and moments across social media. You can get a sneak peak below, and check out Twitter for more (don’t forget to share your own memory using #AfG5years).

Visit our website to learn more about each of the seven student built apps, and to download your favourites. 

 

 

Counting down to App Launch 2016!

It’s an exciting time at Apps for Good as we’re counting down to this year’s App Launch. In just 1 week we’ll be officially launching 7 amazing, student-created apps. At the event on 4 February, hosted by Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, we’ll be celebrating the achievements of the student teams who have created apps to change their world.

AfGawards_grouppic

The student teams have been building their apps since being announced as winners at the Apps for Good Awards 2015

Get to know the apps

The seven apps tackle a wide range of issues such as helping young careers, getting teens interested in reading and helping students hunt for jobs!  

My World of Atoms: an adventure game to help students master the periodic table

MySoundClash: allows users to connect multiple phones to get a bigger sound

Assemble Jobs: helps students find local jobs to fit around their schedules  

BOOKd: helps teens discover and share new books by creating book clubs with friends

GardenKing: helps users identify the plants in their garden and learn more about them

weKonnekt: connects young carers with local resources and support

One Click Politics: helps get young people tuned into politics

The apps will be available on Google Play soon, but in the meantime you can find out more about them and hear from the teams behind them on our website.  

Apps_screenshot

A sneak peek at the seven apps launching soon!

Celebrating 5 years!

This year’s App Launch is also extra special as we will be kicking off our 5 year celebration. You can join in the celebration on 4 February by sharing your favourite Apps for Good memory or app or tell us what you hope to see in the future using #AfG5years.

Apps for Good App Launch 2015 – celebrating students’ achievements

It’s hard to believe that the Apps for Good App Launch 2015 , hosted by Thomson Reuters and powered by Facebook, was already two weeks ago. We’ve just about gotten over the excitement of launching Chore Attack, CryptoConnex, I’m Okay, Party Spot, Pocket Money Pig, Safe Nav and ShoreCast on to the market.

The App Launch is our chance to officially launch the apps that won the Apps for Good Awards 2014 and celebrate the hard work of the student teams, as well as the educators, Experts and corporate partners who’ve been supporting them along the way.

But the day wasn’t just about the party. We also wanted the students to build upon what they’d been learning in the course by thinking about how they could take their app further and what their future careers might be. So, after long journeys to London, the students participated in some very interactive workshops run by some of our amazing Experts from Fluxx, Gojimo, Snook and 3-beards.

After a bit of downtime and speeches from Debbie Forster, our MD, and Bob Schukai, Head of Advanced Product Innovation at Thomson Reuters, it was time to officially showcase the apps and let the crowds in to celebrate with the teams.

If it’s not clear from these tweets, and the App Launch photos here, the students really were the stars of the show. Everyone wanted to get a few minutes with the teams – including the press. This great piece from Wired captures the experiences of the teams involved, their teachers and Experts. You can also hear from the students themselves in this radio piece by Deutsch Welle.

Th App Launch is definitely one of the most exciting days of the year here at Apps for Good – we really enjoy celebrating the achievements of the students taking our course and the opportunity to bring together our corporate partners, Educators, Experts and Fellows. We would like to thank all of you for your hard work and for making what we do possible!

Don’t forget to download the apps launched at the Apps for Good App Launch – you can find them all here.

App Launch 2015 Countdown – Safe Nav

If you’re a regular reader of our blog you’ll know that the Apps for Good App Launch, powered by Facebook and hosted by Thomson Reuters, will be taking place in just one week on the 5th of February. In 7 days we’ll be celebrating the official launch of 7 great apps on the market. In the last of our blog countdown series we’re profiling Safe Nav – which will be available to download soon!

The Safe Nav app - download on 05 February

The Safe Nav app – launching on 5 February! 

The Safe Nav app uses UK police data to help users navigate streets with confidence. The app won the Connected Community category powered by TalkTalk at the Apps for Good Awards 2014. Safe Nav was created by Joshua, Rikardo, Ijahmar and Callum, students at Shireland Collegiate Academy in the West Midlands.

Safe Nav presented their app idea at the Apps for Good Awards 2014

The Safe Nav team presented their app idea at the Apps for Good Awards 2014

As urban teenagers the Safe Nav team were surrounded by media coverage about crime rates in these communities, prompting them to address this issue with their app. The team recently reflected on what they wanted to achieve, “Our app is designed to help people feel safe when out and about, giving them the latest available crime statistics for the area they are in and alerting them when they are in an area of high crime“. Check out the video below to hear the team discuss Safe Nav – formerly known as Crime Time – in more detail, and share their highlights of the Apps for Good experience.

Since June, the team have been working hard to take their app from prototype to finished product with the support of TalkTalk and development agency Codeten, fitting in development meetings between classes.

All this effort and has paid off and the app will be officially launched on the market on 05 February.

Want to know more about crime in your area? Download Safe Nav here and don’t forget to tell your friends and family about it! 

Here's a sneak peak at how the Safe Nav app will look

Here’s a sneak peek of the Safe Nav app 

App Launch 2015 Countdown – Party Spot

The 2015 Apps for Good App Launch, powered by Facebook and hosted by Thomson Reuters, is fast approaching! Next week, on the 5th of February, the seven winning teams from the Apps for Good Awards 2014 will officially launch their apps on the market. In our second last countdown blog it’s time to find out more about Party Spot!

The Party Spot app - download on 05 February

The Party Spot app – available to download soon 

The Party Spot app helps parents to find venues for children’s parties. The app was chosen by the public as the winner of  People’s Choice category, powered by Tech London Advocates, at the Apps for Good Awards 2014 in June. Party Spot is the brainchild of Tyler, Dylan, Oliver and Jashvanth students at Sutton Grammar School in Surrey.

The Party Spot team presented their idea at the Apps for Good Awards 2014

The Party Spot team presented their idea at the Apps for Good Awards 2014

The team had all seen their parents get stressed trying to find places to hold birthday parties and wanted to create an app that would help parents find party venues with ease. Check out the video below where the team tells us about the background to their app idea and what key lessons they’ve taken away from their Apps for Good experience.

 

Since their win in June the boys have been working hard to turn their prototype app, developed during the Apps for Good course, into a finished product. Throughout this process the boys have been supported by London Tech Advocates and development agency Fuerte International. The boys have worked really hard during this process, but have also really enjoyed it, with Dylan recently commenting, “It’s been a great experience, seeing our idea grow into a professionally made app. From making mood-boards to the actual testing of the app, it has been a hands-on and thoroughly enjoyable experience.”

All of this effort and hard work has paid off and Party Spot is now available to download from Google Play.

Do you know someone planning a child’s party? Tell them about Party Spot and help make their planning stress-free! 

Here's a glimpse of what the Party Spot will look like!

Here’s a glimpse of what the Party Spot will look like!