Media Release 18 September 2017
NZ Teen in Global Competition to Create Super Happiness
A global challenge with big prizes and massive opportunities has a single Kiwi as one of its 15 finalists announced today.
The Singularity U / Project Heha Super Happiness Challenge is looking for solutions to help people achieve true happiness, and has invited people from all over the world to share unique solutions to co-create a happier world.
18 year old Christchurch woman, Lucia Kennedy, has reached the semi-finals with her project called Luminary Legacies, the only New Zealander to do so and from an expected 500 entries. Her idea is to get people to promote, congratulate and acknowledge those who have made an impact on our lives, using apps and other forms of social media to do so, around the world.
“It’s about creating a viral global conversational environment of acknowledgment. It’s about us getting connected with each other, our friends, families, peers, and the communities we belong to. In the act of acknowledgment, people get to know they make a difference and they have left a legacy or their signature on that person’s life – they become a Luminary, says Lucia.
The competition organisers believe people have an innate need to be happy and should share that happiness with others. However, they say our collective level of happiness has not kept up with its potential growth despite technological advances and improved quality of life.
“I want us all to reach out and acknowledge these luminaries; many of whom don’t know the positive effect they have on our lives, and sadly many never will but I want to change that.”
Lucia says what she really loves about her idea is the simplicity.
“Our goal is to create 1 billion luminaries, share1 billion legacies and in the process activate 2 billion moments of happiness that last forever; transforming our lives and motivating us to reach out to others so happiness expands and grows. Real acknowledgement is a gift that keeps giving; it gives us the option to be generous, be big, inspire, connect while also making someone else happy, – that’s super happiness right there,” she says.
The 15 Semi-Finalists have each uploaded a short video providing a high-level overview of their idea, and the finalists will be announced by judges on 22 September. A popular vote is also underway online and the results of that will add to the “pitch” power of the finalists chosen. The three finalists win US$5,000 each and will be invited to pitch their ideas in San Francisco on October 20th (a paid, three day trip to the San Francisco) and compete for the grand prize of US$35,000, with the runner up winning US$10,000.
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