Teenagers pitch Hackney community projects to Dragon’s Den style panel

Hackney teenagers have pitched ways to improve their community to Dragon’s Den style judges, including MP Meg Hillier.

The 60 young people, aged 15 to 17, designed campaigns for people in the borough to benefit and presented them to the panel last Thursday.

Ideas included Sexpectations, a programme to improve sex education in schools and Technology Takeover, designed to limit how dependent young people are on technology.

Another idea, Give us Your Voice, aimed to encourage young people to get on the electoral register.

Participant, Caroline Leronimou, 16 said: “I really enjoyed the Dragon’s Den. It’s similar to the real thing but aimed at younger people so it really worked for us.

“I’ve found NCS with The Challenge good fun, it’s interesting and I’ve done lots of new things. I’ve met new people and socialised. I think everyone should do it.”

MP Meg Hillier said: “I think the day has been fantastic, it underlines to me how talented our young people are and what great ideas they have.

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“They should be listened to more in the Houses of Parliament and the House of Commons because the ideas they have are spot on.”

The NCS challenge is a government funded scheme that sees youngsters completing a series of programmes to develop communication, teamwork and leadership skills.

Through the summer 240 Hackney participants will forge links with local charities and partake in social change programmes.