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Announcing our Youth Mentor Challenge Winning Ideas

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In our Youth Mentor Challenge we've been keen to explore how we might create intergenerational relationships – and we've been so inspired by the coming together of people from all walks of life, all over the world. When AARP Foundation approached us to launch a conversation around reverse mentorship we knew this would be a meaningful, engaging topic for our community.  As one member of our sponsor team said, "I am very impressed by the level of commitment and feedback between community members." 

With 216 Research Contributions and 113 Ideas, we saw a dynamic conversation grow around the importance of generations connecting in new ways. And now we are poised for impact with some very exciting winning ideas! 

After weighing in with the community throughout our Evaluation phase, the OpenIDEO Team met with our sponsors and experts to review our Top 20 Ideas. We had a very rich conversation around the updates that the community made in the Refinement phase as well as exploring what it might look like to move these ideas forward into impact. Reviewing visuals, watching videos and brainstorming initial implementation milestones showed us just how hard the community worked around this topic.

And now we are honoured to announce the Winning Ideas of our Youth Mentorship Challenge! Congrats to our winners for all of their hard work and cheers, everyone, for being part of such an inspiring journey.
AARP Startup Incubator
Kenneth’s fun startup mashup pairs skills, funding and ideas acquired by AARP members with the technical, social media and coding skills of younger people to help both groups learn, share and create new initiatives together. Not only did Kenneth recruit a fantastic team of collaborators who contributed lots of insights and feedback in the challenge, but he pursued in-person input and prototyping advice from local organisations to help his idea grow. Nice job, Kenneth!
Submitted by:
Kenneth Walton
Find My Friend
Find My Friend is an online platform that challenges young people to help older adults find their friends and connect back with them. We love Ignasi’s beautiful visuals, deep consideration of user experience and the idea’s four ‘core values.’ Find My Friend’s research of personal history is no doubt a recipe for powerful storytelling. What a bonus to an already compelling contribution! Thank you, Ignasi!
Submitted by:
Ignasi Giró Reig
Hidden Histories
Hidden Histories is a program that matches young people with older adults to create custom digital maps centered around memorable locations. We love that Kate’s idea encourages bi-directional mentorship. Older adults have the opportunity to become more digitally savvy as they help younger people preserve memories for future generations. This adventure in history aims to peel back the layers of a place through personal narratives which may even help uncover new and important information. Amazing work, Kate!
Submitted by:
Kate Machtiger
Match & Swap
Match & Swap is an online service that builds relationships by matching people according to their values, interests and the skills or knowledge they want to share or acquire. A fun twist that combines sites like with Skillshare, Selina’s idea outlines a plan and a platform to create ‘win-win’ mentoring relationships for people of all ages. In addition, her thoughtful platform mockups and clever user experience maps help clarify how this kind of mentorship matchmaking can happen in real life. Great work, Selina!
Submitted by:
Selina McPherson
Project Sidekick
Project Sidekick is a veteran training program hosted at maker-spaces like TechShop. Funded by companies and supported by younger mentors, Project Sidekick leverages in-person connections and financial sponsorship to support veterans. We were especially inspired by Donji’s willingness to recruit help with creating fresh graphics and his proactive efforts to prototype his idea through video and in-person interviews. Great job Donji!
Submitted by:
Donji YD
Reminiscing Together
Reminiscing Together is a tablet application that supports intergenerational collaboration towards one goal: writing a book of life stories ‘together’. Using technology as a bridge, Cristhian’s idea brings volunteer listeners and narrators together to share stories and capture life histories digitally and in print. Not only did Cristhian wow us with his thoughtful approach to story sharing, but we’re loving his early progress prototyping physical copies of early Reminiscens books, complete with photos and stories. Way to go, Cristhian!
Submitted by:
Cristhian Parra
Reverse Summer School
Reverse Summer School is a program that empowers young people to teach technology focused classes to older adults, using the empty classroom space during summer holidays. We love that Mathieu’s idea empowers young people with early teaching experience and helps them recognize their value as potential mentors to older adults. What an awesome way to hack existing, underutilized spaces! Great job, Mathieu!
Submitted by:
Mathieu Chevalier
Rock uP Radio
Rock uP Radio is a radio program co-produced by young people and older adults at college and university stations. Since radio programming will be created collaboratively, Rock uP Radio will itself function as a cross-generational mentoring opportunity. What we also love about Bettina’s idea is the deep consideration of scalability with the potential to reach both national audiences and local communities. Fabulous job, Bettina!
Submitted by:
Bettina Fliegel

Now, let's head on over to the Winning Ideas phase and check out these amazing ideas. Stay tuned for the opening of the Impact phase where new stories and learnings will be shared.
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