#YouthvsCOVID: “Teamwork and communication was the most important thing in the entire project”
by Meera, 15
This has definitely been a very exciting journey for me. I was first told about the hackathon by a friend at very late notice, around 2 days before the deadline. I found myself in a dilemma wondering whether I should join it or not. However, after reading about what the hackathon was I became intrigued and so I joined.
It has been a hectic, yet amazing journey. I have completed and done things I had never even thought I was able to achieve. At the start, we went through an idea-generating/design thinking process, and to be fair I found this the hardest. But once we got the idea that we wanted to stand against domestic abuse and abuse in general, the development of the idea got easier. As we continued, the different variations and features we decided to implement in our app began to flow and started to come together nicely.
I was extremely grateful for the team I was put in, as we all brought something different to the table. For me, I didn’t have too much experience in coding, and I was more interested in the business side, and the logistics of the app, including researching and marketing strategies. Like me, my other teammates also had their own preferences, and we were lucky that they all fit nicely together like a jigsaw puzzle. Not only this, but there was always someone there to help and we never had any arguments either, it was all collaborative and supportive teamwork.
I began my load of work by creating an app summary for the app we planned to develop. This then got sent as a brief to our mentors (who were also a great inspiration) and then we were properly able to begin our project.
I learned that teamwork and communication was the most important thing of the whole project, as each part of the app depended on another.
I then started to make a base of a website for our app using some tutorials and HTML on Glitch. This took around 2 days, and I had quite a few issues with it, as some of the code wasn’t working, and at other times the images weren’t uploading. I had to make sure that the images I used weren’t copyright. After this, I finally got some help from my teammates and some other tutorials, we got up a base of the website, which was then given to someone else in our team to personalise.
Myself and another teammate also then began to email the companies that we thought could support us in our journey and could test our app and give feedback, some of which we had remote meetings with and incorporated the feedback into our app.
The highlight of my whole experience has been seeing it all finally come together as a fully developed product.
Not to mention, the tiny details, such as designing the colour schemes and logos and taglines, which were given multiple brainstorms. I was also in charge of creating a pitch deck in which I learned so much about the importance of simplicity and images in presentations.
In addition to this, I was also in charge of a lot of the research that went on in the app, and so that was what had inspired me most to make the app. After hearing and reading many stories about abuse, we as a group were really passionate about the topic, and it got us inspired to create an app, which could potentially work towards lowering the statistics of abuse in the UK.
We had many meetings with our mentors, businesses, charities and people, such as Barnardo’s and officials of already built companies to support similar things as us, and we got incredible feedback from them as well about our app and we got new perspectives about things we never would’ve thought of. We were also able to create new connections and networks which really seem to make it all come to life just a bit more.
Another one of my favourite highlights was making the pitch and recording. It was the time we really saw our project fully come together and the team bond not only as teammates but as real friends, and although it took around 100 tries, I believe it was worth it and in the end, we came out with a good pitch which incorporated all of our ideas together into a 3 minute video.
I thoroughly enjoyed so much of the project, and learnt so much, from the tiny intricate design details and colour schemes, to the bigger marketing schemes and networks and understanding the finances of the project. Overall, I enjoyed building something that my team and I are very passionate about and hope to see it develop even more into something big, that can make a change for the good in the world in these uncertain times.