Scholars raise €662 for charity in two hours in the name of innovation

A team of PhD Students from the Innovation Academy were given a task to make money in two hours with €5 Euro seed funding. They had originally organised a fundraising jump off of O’Connell Bridge into the icy Liffey, but were denied permission from the Gardai. Stuck for ideas and with the clock ticking, they utilised social networking to fundraise.

The team received the open-ended task at 5:30pm on Wednesday with the seed funding, and had to complete their task by 11 a.m. on Thursday. The actual money-making activity could only take place for two hours.

Under pressure, they quickly formed an alliance with Headway Ireland, a charity which provides support and services to people affected by brain injury.

The scholars set up a MyCharity account and contacted their individual networks through texting, emailing, Facebook and Twitter. Once the word spread, donations from the various networks started coming in. The team also encouraged their networks to forward the information to further networks, creating a communication web. Donations were received from Ireland and the UK.

The diverse PhD team, including Aisling Miller (TCD, Microbiology), Donal Holland (TCD, Engineering), Tim Brosnan (UCD, Engineering), Karen Jackson (UCD, Business) and Julieann Galloway (UCD, American Studies), are delighted with their outcome in the two hours, and are also excited to create awareness about acquired brain injury. Team member Julieann Galloway, who suffered a brain injury as a child, went on to swim the English Channel on behalf of Headway in 2009.

The scholars are a part of the inaugural Innovation Academy, a collaborative joint venture in PhD education that builds on existing resources and synergies between the two institutions and recognises the need for Higher Education to be a catalyst for innovation in Ireland.

The team are now asking people to support the power of innovation and networking by donating on their MyCharity page,

For further information about Headway, please visit or call the Headway information and support helpline at 1890 200 278.


Posted 09 September 2010

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