A LIMERICK secondary school student has designed an award-winning app to encourage greater participation by girls in sports by motivating them and creating a sense of community.
14-year-old Miracle Anyichie developed the “Bounce” app when she discovered that, by the age of 18, three in ten girls described themselves as sporty, compared to six in ten boys.
Her own experience showed her it was difficult to find a sports club for girls, so she decided to act.
Miracle, who is a student at Colaiste Nano Nagle, said that her project was about gender inequality in sports, with a focus on basketball.
“Girls drop out of sports in their teenage years, due to a lack of support and lack of motivation. My project aims to be the solution to this problem and bring awareness to it.
“I included training videos for girls to practice basketball skills, a social network for girls in sports to mingle.”
“Bounce is an app designed to empower girls to participate in sports by motivating them and creating a sense of community, encouraging girls to unlock their full potential.
Miracle created her app through participation in after-school sessions with Teen Turn, an organisation that provides teenage girls the opportunity to gain hands-on STEM experience.
“Teen Turn helped me develop my project idea. At first, it wasn’t clear what my project was about. However, after following Teen Turn’s criteria, I was able to get a better understanding of what I wanted my project to be,” she explained.
“Teen Turn also motivated me to work hard. Being in a community of inspiring girls increased my work ethic a lot, and provided me with the support and skills I needed to succeed.”
Currently focusing on basketball as its main sport, Miracle hopes future iterations of the app will include more sports and an interactive guide to all sports clubs across Ireland.
While her app is an obvious example of the benefits of being involved with Teen-Turn, Miracle believes she also gained other skills.
“Through Teen-Turn, I learned so many new skills such as coding and communication skills. I’m more confident now and not afraid to speak up about issues in society. I would not be where I am today, without the support of Teen Turn,” she added.