2018 Big Idea ChallengeCONEL students Kiera Holmes, Ledian Hoxhaj and Melany Monteiro Moniz, who are calling for the public’s support to win this year’s Big Idea Challenge.

A group of Business students want the public to help them win a competition by voting for their idea for a new safety product inspired by the Grenfell Tower disaster.

Kiera Holmes, 18, Ledian Hoxhaj, 20 and Melany Monteiro Moniz, 22, are representing the College of Harngey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL) in the final of the 2018 Big Idea Challenge.

Their idea, a Safety Jumping Bag (SJB), is a giant airbag that can be deployed in situations when fire and rescue services cannot reach people, such as in a fire or earthquake, to enable them to jump from buildings without harm.

Seventy-one people lost their lives and 70 more were injured in the fire at the 24-storey Grenfell Tower block in North Kensington in June 2017.

The students, who are all studying Business 90 Credit Diploma Level 3, are up against 20 other colleges from across the UK.

Ledian said: “Our idea is based on the concept of film industry stunt people jumping from high rise buildings onto safety bags. The product has the same design and would be made of fireproof fluorescent material with built in sprinklers.

Melany added: “We’re aiming to sell this product to developers who would pay the full amount, directly to councils and governments for half price and the fire services, who will have a mobile unit on the back of their trucks.”

The students initially had to submit their idea and identify how it resolved a problem met a need as well as its customers and how it will make money.

They then developed it at a boot camp hosted by NatWest bank, where they received coaching and mentoring from business professionals to develop their ideas before creating the short video pitch below.

The winning team will win prizes including free websites, internships and business mentoring to help turn their idea into a reality.

The Big Idea Challenge is run by London Metropolitan University and invites teams from further education and sixth form colleges to develop and pitch business plans.

Jackie Mitchell, Head of School for Business, said: “We are very proud that our students are among the finalists of  the Big Idea Challenge for the second year running. They have done so well to get this far.

“It is s a fantastic competition and a great opportunity for students to show their creativity and innovation while developing their skills in business. They have come up with a brilliant idea, and we hope as many people as possible vote for them to win.”

To vote for the CONEL team go to http://bigideachallenge.co/finalists-2018/idea-8. Voting closes at midnight on Wednesday 25 April.

The idea with the most votes will be crowned the People’s Choice winner at a gala awards night on Thursday 26 April.

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