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December 14, 2020

Plastic pollution? That’s what these kids eat for breakfast. We’re talking about the participants in the first international edition of the Dopper Changemaker Challenge Junior. Like true ocean-saving heroes, over 31,000 kids – yup, that’s the right amount of zeroes – were ready to design their solution to the plastic problem. Surprising? Check. Innovative? Check. Better than we could’ve come up with ourselves? Read on to find out. (Check!)

In case you missed it: at Dopper we have this crazy idea that socio-environmental issues concern kids too (yes, really). Which is why we collaborate with Designathon Works to help kids design a better future world.

Literally. During the Dopper Changemaker Challenge Junior, a design competition to which we invite primary school kids from five countries to tackle the plastic problem. And tackle it they did, in a way that exceeded our wildest dreams. 31,000 participants strong, they submitted ideas that blew the judges away.

Plastic-free packaging for school snacks? Sarah, Eline and Melody from Haarlem invented it. A torpedo boat that filters plastic out of sea water? No problem for Tommy, Lara and Ertjin from Berlin. And thanks to Sabina, Jamuna and Ful Bahadur from Kathmandu we’re 100% sold on noodles packaging made from 100% plant-based material.

The best part? This is only a tiny sample of the brilliant ideas we had the absolute pleasure of receiving. Lucky for us, we outsourced the daunting task of selecting a winner to expert jury panels in the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, the UK, and Nepal.

And here they are… [drumroll please!]... the winners of the Dopper Changemaker Challenge Junior 2020:

The UK - the Solar Powered Balloon

The balloon that works on solar energy and filters microplastics from the air with a static battery.

Netherlands - DIDIS

The solution that makes plastic packaging for personal care products entirely redundant.

Germany - the No Plastic Bus

A corona-proof education method that shows alternatives to disposable plastic.

Belgium - the Cleaner App

The app that motivates people to go out in nature ánd pick up plastic litter at the same time. Did anyone say win-win?

Nepal - the Dog Food Vending Machine

The bin that provides dog food for stray dogs when you throw plastic in it. Another great win-win.

These solutions are exactly what our oceans need. They’re also precisely the reason why Dopper created the challenge. Dopper wants to give every child who wants to contribute to solving the plastic problem the tools to actually do so.

“The fact that we received such clever and impactful ideas reinforces our belief that we should involve children in solving the plastic pollution problem. Children are very capable of inventing ideas that truly improve the world” – Anneke Hendriks (Manager Education, Partnerships and Impact Investment at Dopper).

Starting in January, we’ll work with the winners to make a first prototype of their winning ideas. And then? Put them on display, of course. Ready to show the world just what these kids are made of!