This week, Nesta Challenges announced the ten finalists for its Tech to Connect competition, where up to £500,000 is up for grabs for participating organisations.
Tech to Connect seeks new ways to use technology to reduce social isolation and loneliness in England. The finalists have been selected from 130 applications from charities and social enterprises across the country and include London based organisations, Marie Curie, Two Generations and Mirthy.
Nesta Challenges will provide guided support and a £25,000 grant to each finalist for the next five months, so they can develop their ideas into working prototypes and development plans.
Carers Connect – an online platform from Marie Curie to bring carers together virtually in order to provide vital support and improve their health and wellbeing
Two Generations – which uses a data system to pair isolated older people with younger flatmates, to create the best match for a long-lasting home-share
Mirthy – a platform to enable older adults to stay active and improve their ability to interact with others whilst remaining independent at home. Mirthy will connect under-utilised communal space in retirement housing schemes with those looking for social clubs
Social isolation is a major public health concern affecting people from all walks of life and this is reflected by the breadth of the ideas from across the finalist organisations.
In February 2020, the judging panel will assess the finalists’ progress and from this select the winner and runners-up. In March 2020, a final showcase event will take place at which the winner and runners-up will be announced. The winner will receive a £100,000 cash prize, and the two runners up will each receive £75,000.