Striving together with our youth
At Droople, we are convinced that educating the next generations all over the world about the vital role of water in all aspects of our lives is of paramount importance. Why is that?
To fight the global shortage of water supply predicted by the UN and therefore ensure the access to clean water and sanitation to all, the humanity of tomorrow needs to better understand, value, and manage water. We will need to develop good practices and leverage innovative technologies. As an enabler of this global trend, Droople partners with organizations and schools worldwide.
Droople to support Water Alliance UAE
Droople has joined as Silver Sponsor of the RE-NEW Student Innovation Challenge launched by the Water Alliance Association – a non-profit organization located in the heart of the Dubai’s Sustainable City. Water Alliance UAE deploys great efforts to educate individuals, from primary school students through to universities and the corporate sector, on their water behavior and inspire action to lower our collective water footprint.
RE-NEW Student Innovation Challenge
RE-NEW Student Innovation Challenge is part of the Water Alliance schools program, including “Youth Water Ambassadors” and “Hand Washing Heroes”. Designed for student aged 8 to 18, it launched a call to action for the young minds to propose new creative and innovative solutions to the world’s water issues.
The submission is closing on March 22 – World Water Day. The award ceremony will take place on April 22 – Earth Day, an annual event celebrated around the world to demonstrate support for environmental protection and coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network.
Kids in technology: inspiration by example
As a Silver Sponsor of the RE-NEW Student Innovation Challenge, Droople takes an active part in all the activities related to this promising program. We recently had the opportunity to run an innovation workshop for schools in Dubai and are proud to have given the kids the opportunity to meet Ramzi, Droople CEO. Now, the Challenge runs at full steam, and we are looking forward to coaching the young innovators for their pitch, as well as being a part of the jury for the RE-NEW Challenge award!
“We received an incredible quantity of pertinent and insightful questions! Through sharing my personal experience, the story, and the mission of why Droople was created, I hope to have inspired some of the young entrepreneurs to join the water sector in the future!”, says Ramzi, Droople CEO.
Champions of the Student Innovation Challenge
Over 130 students stepped up and took on the mission of finding innovative solutions to improve the way we access, treat or distribute water. While students in the older category came up with the most innovative and holistic solutions, the youngest students were passionate participants with the highest number of entries. Here are the winners of the Challenge:
Age category 8 to 10: Isha R Nair, from Nad Al Sheba, with her nature-inspired project about domestic wastewater recycling.
Age category 11 to 13: Sashini Manikandan, from Sharjah, for the QR Code enabled Water Kiosk solution.
Age category 14 to 17: Aliyah Fazal, from Abu Dhabi, who designed the water saving, universal fit Eco Tap.
Congratulations to all the finalists for their innovative ideas to solving global water challenges!
Connected Bio-Filter by Ishika Nambiar, Dubai
Among the finalists, Droople had the chance to support and mentor a remarkable young student from Dubai – Ishika Nambiar, a 10-year-old 6th grade student of the GEMS New Millennium School in Dubai.
After several brainstorming sessions with Water Alliance partners, Ishika came up with a creative solution, consisting of a water filtration system based on biomimicry – meaning that it is inspired by the water filtration processes seen in natural water ecosystems.
Her smart, connected system allows to collect any water wasted at the water dispensers and taps in a first water tank containing a bio-filter based on the properties of some aquatic plants. In fact, the roots of many aquatic plants, such as water hyacinths, water lilies or mosses, are known for their ability to filter and purify water, while also locking floating particles. Water purified by such a bio-filter can then be transferred to a second tank to be reused.
The project aims at using the existing installations at Ishika’s school Zen Garden, where a water tank already exists. By creating a bio-filter connected to the school drinking water appliances, the “aquarium” could recycle and reuse water to eliminate any waste.
“The Water Buddy” Educational Program
However, Ishika’s idea does not stop here. She proposes to launch a school-wide educational program named “The Water Buddy”, providing the way to involve students in the day-to-day activities of the water recycling system. For example, such tasks as taking care of plants or fish, analyzing the database, using the related application, and analyzing the results could be entirely performed by the students themselves. Ishika also proposed to display the real-time water usage statistics gathered by the application at the school entrance hall to present the most important indicators as a feedback to all the water users.
That project already gained the attention of the school authorities. Ishika comments: “I have shared my idea to the teachers at my school and I collected their support to make my project a reality. I believe that my solution can help children understand that people are part of the water ecosystem of our planet. All of us, we must take care of it together!”
In its scope, this project goes far beyond the water savings it could certainly bring. By becoming a flagship project, it could play a key role in helping to educate the younger generation about the importance of maintaining natural ecosystems and bringing first-hand understanding of water being a vital resource sustaining all life on Earth.
This is how Ishika explains her taking the decision to work on an innovative solution in the water sector: “While studying the water scarcity topic, I was impressed by the UNICEF reports depicting the conditions of some 2 billion people that are experiencing water shortage around the world today. From my own observation, I noticed many times, that students at my school often forget to close the tap while collecting water from water dispensers, which leads to water waste. To help tackle the issue of water scarcity affecting the entire world, I decided to work on a solution which would allow to stop this water squandering.”
Ishika is a Water Alliance Student Ambassador. She is 10 years old and is a student at the GEMS New Millennium School in Dubai. In her spare time, Ishika loves singing and playing guitar; and because she is in love with books, she also runs for her friends a school reading club named “Bookie Wookie.” Despite her young age, Ishika is already an experienced researcher with a true dedication to environmental issues. In 2020, Ishika joined the Water Alliance Association UAE as a Student Ambassador. She comments: “It was an amazing opportunity for me: we participated in monthly online campaigns for water-related issues, and even wrote a book. This has really made me aware that it’s our responsibility and duty to take care of the planet.”
In February 2021, when the Water Alliance launched a Student Challenge, Ishika immediately accepted: “What if I could come up with some awesome idea related to water challenges faced by the world… !”
“Passion is a judicious blend of empathy, enterprise and execution”
“Regardless of the abundance of water, a God-given natural resource, there are several lives reeling under scarcity and disease, comments Venetia Jayaraj, Head of Middle School at GEMS New Millenium School, Al Khail, Dubai. Water everywhere will result in water nowhere if we persist in our free-flowing thoughtless actions. As quoted by Julia A. F. Carney, “Little drops of water make a mighty ocean”, the solution lies in picking up and contributing towards a safer and cleaner society by conserving this precious significant drop.
As the proud winner of the Eco-Schools Green Flag award, GEMS New Millennium School is on its journey to Restore Our Earth to health. At this juncture, Ishika’s project validates the school’s initiatives to ensure its students are empowered in creating sustainable and innovative solutions for the world’s challenges.
While we at GEMS New Millennium School, endeavor to encourage Ishika in translating her dream into reality, we urge you to pause and reflect, do your actions impact the world? If so, how will you contribute?”
“Re-New Our World aims to enable youth to think positively and creatively about the future of water. We believe that young inquisitive minds can unlock innovative ideas to address today’s water challenges and contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. At Water Alliance, we seek to support young students with knowledge and tools which can empower them to positively influence others and bring about a sea-change in the way we all value water.” Edurne Gil, Programs Director, Water Alliance