The Platform Pop Up Project launched in spring 2016 with the purpose of giving a few young people between the ages of 18 and 24 the opportunity to test out a business idea or run a project/event in a great space near Brixton, South London.
For this project, Spark+Mettle partnered with Meanwhile Space, a Community Interest Company that has been helping to connect communities with empty spaces for several years.
The young people could have the space anything from a day to several days, depending on their idea. To apply they had to submit a proposal, which was then followed up by an interview. Fast forward a few weeks and one induction, meet the awesome Suraj who was one young person selected to use the space.
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My name is Suraj, I’m 24 and I’m a co-creator from the first cohort of Star Track. I was keen to develop my idea Created by Schools, which builds tools for schools. The idea is that we get a bunch of good people interested in education together to make, design and create for schools.
I wanted to use the Platform space to run our first hack day on games for the classroom. The product that we hoped to create was a series of games to be used in classes. We would then provide these tools for schools everywhere for free. The hope was that the first hack day would be our first step to launch all of our future ones.
There were a number of good things that came from having the space. The event was community oriented and we were able to give space for creativity and collaboration to reign. Also, it was a positive start to a series of events. If I were to rate the success of my pop up project, I would give it a seven out of ten. The products weren’t totally finished at the end but people had fun and this would be a great example to showcase for future funders and attendees.
In terms of how it fits into my career aspirations—I definitely want to run more events like this. It’s how I see myself giving back to education in the long run. From here, we want to run more hack days, building tools for schools. We’d like to apply for a grant from a teaching organisation to develop it further too. First we need to share the outcomes from our day!