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Play with Grind - An Inclusive and Modular way to play

We bring play to your neighbourhood, your home, wherever and whenever you want.

Photo of Yong Chong
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Our proposed solution aims to improve the access, affordability and quality of play for underprivileged communities. 

This product builds on the idea of Nike Grind’s Madureira Playground in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and its vision to bring play to children in a local neighbourhood. However, not all children have the privilege to reside in clean, safe and functional communities. 

70 million children do not attend school worldwide. 

Source: The Guardian

This product aims to solve two problems: 

  1. The lack of accessibility to play and learning for children in marginalised circumstances. 
  2. To reduce waste in the massive industry of toys made out of plastics. 

The modules, stored and carried in a backpack, could include one of these sets: small-scale football game, building pop-up shelter and DIY building blocks.  A big part of these products will be made out of Nike Grind material, to reduce the use of plastic and increase the distribution of Nike Grind material product to reach more than middle-class customers. 

Company / Organization Name (if applicable)

We are friends who attended the British Council's Active Citizen workshop, one of us runs a grassroot design thinking consultancy firm.

Website (if applicable)

Which Nike Grind materials will your idea utilize?

  • Rubber Outsoles
  • Rubber Granulate
  • Laminated EVA Foam
  • Laminated PU Foam
  • Mixed Footwear Textile

How specifically will these materials be incorporated into your solution?

Please include a visual (can be either 2D or 3D) representation/prototype of your concept. (required)

What is the current stage of development of your idea?

  • Research & Early Testing

Describe your target market. Who will benefit from your product?

Informal Learning for school-aged children (6-12 years old) who have limited accessibility to play facilities and safe playing spaces in their communities. Some examples are: - Low income group/rural area children who live in urban areas with minimum access to such facilities or facilities that are broken and not properly maintained. - Children at refugee settlements, temporary street shelters and temporary post-disaster shelters, crowded places with limited mobility and safety for play.

How will you scale your idea? Please describe in detail your plan to scale your concept.

1) Targeted local communities with underserved children: Every region has its own set of social challenges involving children that falls within the categories of underserved children we are looking at. Hence, these educational toys would be scalable in every region, working alongside local NGO or social enterprises. We’ll partner with refugees learning centres, shelter homes, foundations and corporates who wish to support this initiative in their CSR outreach programs. 2) Operations: To start with countries where Nike manufactures and distributes locally or has an established local partner. This can keep the cost low, leveraging on existing operations. Based on the Malaysian context analysis, we believe that there are opportunities for us to scale it collaborating with our local work partners such as UNHCR, The Picha Project and E-lluminate, which are working closely with refugees community.

How is your idea innovative?

DIY and indoor toys are aplenty in the market. The massive toy industry is a $22 billion industry, which means a lot of plastic. Ninety per cent of toys are made from some form of plastic and most of them aren't recyclable. Source: CBC However, toys made out of recycled materials are few, given the size of the market. More so for toys with educational play and learning purposes. This idea is a social innovation and a stronger brand positioning on sustainability for Nike.

What inspired this idea?

We are inspired by the communities we’ve worked with, Nike Foundation’s commitment to equality for children’s right to play. In short, we want to bring the simple happiness of play to children, regardless of their circumstances, and in an environmental friendly way.

Tell us about yourself and your team. What is your background and experience?

One of us is a passionate communicator who used to work in the humanitarian field and currently learning innovation, while the other enjoy connecting the dots in marrying design thinking and grassroot advocacy.

In what city are you located?

Kuala Lumpur

In what country are you located?


Please describe how becoming a Top Idea will support the growth of your concept.

To be announced as the Top Idea will enable us to receive feedback and further refinement of the idea. This is a huge step towards validation of our idea, and we are looking forward to prototype and iterate to come out with the most viable products. We hope that access to expertise from Nike and other stakeholders can shed some light on the production of such toys for inclusive education in Malaysia.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Our Workshop

This idea is very cool. I think play is the most important activity in life... for adults too. I know that in underprivileged spaces kids are not adequately provided safe play spaces... this is something we also need to remember for our own idea. Thank you!

Photo of Yong Chong

Thank you so much for the kind words! Wish to see more people creating safe spaces within the limited context :)

Photo of Our Workshop


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