celia pool web tnOn Tuesday 9th November, we’re delighted to be welcoming former pupil, Celia Pool, to speak to the UV and LVI (Year 11 and 12) girls in Chapel. Celia has won the prestigious Women in Innovation Award from Innovate UK this year. A personalised purple plaque, a special twist on the historical blue plaques, will be unveiled in her honour on the school site. Celia Pool is one of a network of 64 Women in Innovation Award winners who are developing pioneering innovations to tackle pressing societal, environmental, and economic challenges. We hope the plaque and Celia’s success inspires our current pupils to pursue their own entrepreneurial ambitions.

About Celia and DAME:
Celia Pool is inspiring young women to be the next generation of changemakers through her sustainable menstrual brand DAME (of which Celia is Co-Founder). Celia is on a mission to make periods positive for people and the planet. She launched the world’s first reusable applicator in 2019 and has just gone to market with a patent-pending reusable pad. All this was possible after the fledgling business secured crowdfunding from more than 5,000 people across 50 countries. So far, its reusable products have replaced 2.5 million disposable applicators and by 2022 the aim is to eliminate 15% of the 1.3 billion UK applicators that end up in landfill or the sea each year. Winning the Women in Innovation Award will enable Celia to work with 20 young women from diverse backgrounds across the UK and bring them on a journey with her to design a new reusable pad aimed at the teenage market. Celia says, ‘I am so happy that awards like this exist! Not only does it highlight how important it is to have women in innovation, but the funding allows us to support the next generation of changemakers by allowing them to be the co-creators of our new teen reusable period pad.’

Her motivation for the project is multifaceted. Firstly, Celia strongly believes that in order to make the biggest environmental impact, it is important to intervene at the earliest stage of a girl’s menstrual experience. Her aim is also to eradicate negative language and taboos around menstruation, which she hopes will transform girls’ confidence during puberty. In addition, by making reusables mainstream, the business can help end period poverty. Equally important to Celia though is for young girls to see how possible it is to be a changemaker, thereby unleashing the next generation of innovators. To make this happen Celia, who studied at the University of Edinburgh and is now based in London, will establish a five-day incubator in summer 2021, where the girls can learn about all aspects of designing and launching an innovative new product. With DAME already securing media attention and Innovate UK funding aimed at supporting innovations that divert ocean plastic, Celia says the most important thing in innovation is to ‘just start’.

For further information about DAME, click here