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Knee High Design Challenge: announcing the 11 funded teams

Knee High Design Challenge: announcing the 11 funded teams

13 January 2014 Written by By Ella Britton Programme consultant

Design Council's Ella Britton announces the 11 teams who we’ll be funding in stage two of the Knee High Design Challenge to test and further develop their ideas.

The efforts from the 25 funded teams in the first stage of the Knee High Design Challenge have been nothing less than inspiring

The efforts from the 25 funded teams in the first stage of the Knee High Design Challenge have been nothing less than inspiring – from Tracey of Kids Connect, presenting unfazed to a room full of stakeholders with baby sick all down her top, to Tom from Pop-up parks working with Nesta on their Rethinking Parks project. Not forgetting the very creative Tea Ladies from Creative Homes managing to convert a stubborn three year old to tooth brushing in just two days.

At the end of stage one, in early December, each team submitted a three minute film and presentation to the selection panel. The panel watched, read, rated and debated each project. Following a consultation with our board of advisors, a decision was made which teams could be given further funding to continue the development of their concepts. Though we’re continuing to talk with all the teams involved about what they need to carry on their great work.

The ideas that are being funded reflect a range of approaches and ambitions. Stage two will ask the teams to start developing their business models, further test the viability of their concepts, and use simple experiments to test and improve their impact.

The 11 teams funded for stage two

Pop-up Parks

Tom Doust, Intelligent Space

The team aim to co-design pop-up-parks with local families in under-used outdoor spaces to encourage those who don’t use green spaces to play during their everyday lives.

Cook & Meet

The Stockwell Partnership & Brixton People’s Kitchen

A new program that supports and trains migrant parents to deliver People’s Kitchens in their local areas. The kitchens aim to build family networks, employability and integration with local services and uses food from shops and markets that would otherwise go to waste.

Creative Homes

Tea Dance for Little People

The brainchild of a team of artists and designers, they aim to create an advice service as well as a range of products that promote interactive play within the home, and relieve day-to-day stress within a family.


Sally Walker

A service that aims to help parents build and strengthen their social networks during pregnancy and mobilise this support in the postnatal period.

The Good Enough Mums Club musical

Emily Beecher in association with Spin Arts

The Good Enough Mums Club is a musical theatre production that aims to inspire parents to change the way they think about themselves, as well as empowering them to share their experiences and seek support and advice in more effective ways.

Kids Connect

Hannah White, Tracey Gilbert and Ben White

An online tool that offers accurate, relevant, and up to date information of local activities for parents. It aims to allow parents to plan journeys, share invitations and build confidence to access activities locally.

Leapfrog Bus

Dr Sara Tilley

This aim of the project is to provide an interactive & engaging travel experience for under 5s using effective spatial design to welcome and inspire families.

Crafty Explorers

Mission:Explore, Lambeth City Farmers & Geography Collective

This enterprise is based in a high-street shop, providing families with stimulating missions that turn the outdoors into a world of discovery for parents and children.

New Moments

The Mental Health Foundation

Looking at the challenges of early bonding between parent and baby. This service uses video interactive guidance to provide parents with positive feedback on the relationship they have with their baby. The aim of this service is give parents every chance to form a strong bond with their baby in the first weeks and months of life.

The Dad Project


Improving the emotional wellbeing of families with young children by providing more timely and relevant information and advice especially for dads. They aim to ensure all dads have the confidence to be as involved in their child’s live as they want to be.

Easy Peasy

Character Counts & Save the Children

A free digital service that builds self-regulation in young children through encouraging parent behaviour change.

Please get in touch if you have any questions, or would like to share advice, support, or to meet any of these teams.

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