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Fortrose Academy pupils win investment at Dragon's Den-style pitch


By Iona M.J. MacDonald

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The Reconnect FA Fortrose Academy pupils: Kareena Hossack, Freya Thomas, Islay Rutter, Shona Campbell, Holly MacDonald, Alix Callaghan, Mara Duffy, Rosie Harrison.
The Reconnect FA Fortrose Academy pupils: Kareena Hossack, Freya Thomas, Islay Rutter, Shona Campbell, Holly MacDonald, Alix Callaghan, Mara Duffy, Rosie Harrison.

S6 Fortrose Academy pupils have secured an investment sum after a Dragon's Den-style pitch for their unique idea which aims create connections between teenagers and the elderly.

The eleven Black Isle school pupils working on the Reconnect FA project, aged 16–17, have also been visiting local care homes to gather more information about their target market.

The Dragon's Den event was organised by Young Enterprise Scotland, who works to inspire and equip all young people to learn, develop and reach their full potential through enterprise.

In the run-up to the Nairn Dragon's Den event, Young Enterprise also held a training day, where the Fortrose Academy pupils had to come up with a new idea to present. The group devised a game called Rossopoly, made to bring generations together and share memories of local landmarks.

The Rossopoly board game created by Reconnect FA.
The Rossopoly board game created by Reconnect FA.

For their Dragon's Den pitch, Reconnect FA put forward their big idea to create an activity book with word searches and colouring in of local Highland landmarks, to inspire conversations between the two generations, and appreciate the heritage of the Highlands.

Shona Campbell, marketing director of the project said: "We are Reconnect FA and our aim is to create an intergenerational connection. These days many youths struggle to find a connection with the elderly.

"This has led to an increasing disconnect between generations as teenagers feel they have very little in common. Unfortunately this means many elderly people get very few visits and phone calls and can feel extremely lonely.

The Reconnect FA Fortrose Academy pupils: Jamie Martin, John Turner, Jack Mann.
The Reconnect FA Fortrose Academy pupils: Jamie Martin, John Turner, Jack Mann.

"In our own community, all of us at Reconnect FA can think of several people in this situation. Our aim is to tackle this issue by creating an activity book with easy grip pencils which allows generations to connect by having colouring pictures and word searches of local landmarks in the Highlands and conversation starters. This will help tackle the disconnect and cherish our Highland heritage and memories.

"On November 6 we did our first pitch of our product at the Dragon's Den, where we were rewarded with an £80 investment to help fund our business.

The young entrepreneurs have even taken to TikTok to document their experiences working on the project.


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