A group of Year 12 students from Otumoetai College, Tauranga is on a mission to encourage children around the country to practice good hygiene in a Covid 19 world.
The group of seven girls was taking part in the 2020 Young Enterprise Scheme. When the Covid lockdown began, they had to pivot from their original business idea, which involved an overseas product, to developing a bright, fun sticker which they hope to see in pre-schools and primary schools around Aotearoa, reminding children about the basics of hygiene including washing hands with soap and water and sneezing into elbows.
“The idea came about because of the increased concern surrounding personal hygiene and the importance of good education about the issue,” says student, Rachel Dunn, CEO of Flare Media.
“Our mission is to improve the personal hygiene of young New Zealanders. Young children are often unsure of the importance of personal hygiene. Particularly during this time, children may be unknowingly putting themselves and others at risk of contracting illnesses. We offer a fun sticker with a memorable character – Kere the Kea -to educate children and loved ones on the importance of basic hygiene,” she says.
While schools were closed, the Young Enterprise group brainstormed and developed the sticker idea during multiple FaceTimes and Google Meets. They collaborated on Google Docs to complete the business portfolio.
“After initially coming up with the idea, our research found that the majority of products currently on the market are not attractive to children. We have noticed that basic hygiene is not practiced well throughout the younger population, which increases the chance of spreading illness,” says Rachel.
The stickers are targeted towards children from preschool to primary school age. The group hopes that schools will buy the stickers and place them in bathrooms and around schools to effectively capture the attention of this younger age bracket.
“We believe that these important messages should be strongly developed from a young age. The stickers are engaging to young children and will encourage them to follow these great hygiene habits. The current COVID stickers are stacked with information that children are unlikely to read. Our stickers will help with the education around COVID but will also be relevant when the pandemic has passed to help prevent the spread of illness,” she says.
Twenty percent of profits from the sticker scheme will be donated to KidsCan.
“We chose KidsCan because they help children and it will be really great to donate to our target market. The work that KidsCan does is extremely important because they really help to improve the quality of life and give children an equal chance of succeeding to their peers,” Rachel says. To order stickers, see https://flaremedia.mystorbie.com/