Six talented students from The Kingsway School in Cheadle have taken the top prize at the Big Bang Competition 2019.
Kirsten Attfield, Thomas Brindley-Carter, Rowan McNally, Fiona Sallaku, Pippa Woods and Arousha Zia wowed the judges of this year’s Rotary Environmental Scientific Advancement Award with their project, entitled ‘Ufikiaji’.
The project investigated and planned solutions to provide a clean water filtration system for Kingsway’s sister school in Kolweny, Kenya, which is based in a rural community heavily dependent on agriculture.
The project would filter contaminated water for drinking, feeding animals and watering crops, while also adding a new element to the school’s curriculum to educate local children.
The Rotary Environmental Scientific Advancement was given out for a third consecutive year at last month’s Big Bang Fair at the NEC, Birmingham, the country’s largest celebration of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) for young people.
As always, the competition challenged participants to display innovation and advanced understanding of the environment, while demonstrating their project had levels of sustainability to make a difference.
Rotary is committed to tackling some of the world’s biggest challenges, including those in the area of clean water and sanitation.
The students received a £500 prize, certificate and trophy, and will enjoy a once in a lifetime experience day to enable them to advance their knowledge and understanding of the issue that they have addressed.
It certainly bodes well for the future that the scientists, engineers and inventors of tomorrow are already producing such astute and creative project work.”
Neal Hammersley, a teacher at The Kingsway School who assisted the students, said, “As a school we are immensely proud of the students’ achievements and wish them the very best of luck as the project moves forward and with their future careers.”
Congratulating the students Hilary Leevers, Chief Executive of EngineeringUK, which organises The Big Bang Competition, said, “The judges have been blown away by the quality of entries from all the finalists – not only for their brilliant new ideas but for how eloquently they spoke about them to the crowds of people at The Big Bang Fair. Huge congratulations to the students whose innovative project stood out for special recognition.
“It certainly bodes well for the future that the scientists, engineers and inventors of tomorrow are already producing such astute and creative project work – congratulations to all those involved in bringing these ideas to The Fair.”
— STEM Kingsway (@kw_STEM) March 14, 2019
Debbie Hodge, President of Rotary in Great Britain & Ireland commented, “We were delighted to take part in The Big Bang Competition for a third consecutive year in 2019 and sponsor the Rotary Prize for Environmental Scientific Advancement.
“Rotary is committed to transforming communities and tackling some of the world’s biggest challenges, and that includes looking after our environment, which has become an increasingly important focus for our organisation and our volunteers.
“Rotary is actively involved in creating projects to protect our environment and preserve our planet, covering everything from monthly beach cleans to long-term sustainability. It is fascinating to see the work of these talented young people in this area.
“It is very exciting to see how the research and ideas from these young people could one day change the world. All of the projects were fantastic which made judging really difficult, but the work by this year’s winners was particularly impressive.”
This year’s eight finalists in the Rotary Award category provided lots of innovative ideas, from edible water bottles to reduce plastic waste, to investigating how combining urine with discarded seeds can improve plant growth.
Full list of finalists (with region) for the Rotary Environmental Scientific Advancement Award
- Lavender Home Education Group (London)
- McLaren High School, Scotland
- Rawlins Academy (East Midlands)
- Simon Balle All-through School (Eastern)
- The Kingsway School (North West)
- Thomas Telford School (West Midlands)
- Sutton Valence School (South East)
- Kingswood School (South West)