The Care Innovation Challenge is back!

The Care Innovation Challenge, a hackathon-style creative weekend of idea generation and prototype trialling, will return in July 2022.  With cash prizes for the top spots, expert mentoring and guaranteed media coverage this is an opportunity not to be missed.

Applications for a place at the weekend opened on 14th March, and creative thinkers, anyone who has a passion for making ideas a reality and people who want to make a positive difference to people’s lives are invited to apply at

The Challenge, hosted by the Care Innovation Hub (CIH), was established in 2018 to create a platform for exploration and innovation in the social care sector. The CIH is now run by the National Care Forum (NCF) supported by Think Local Act Personal (TLAP) through their National Co-production Advisory Group (NCAG) to ensure people with lived experience help to create solutions to key challenges faced by the care sector. NCF is dedicated to developing innovation in the social care and support sector and this is a natural home to drive the CIH into the future.

This is a great opportunity for NCF. We are an organisation that has shown leadership in transformation across the care and support sector as Co-Chair of the government Digital Advisory Group, strategic leaders in Digital Social Care and engaged in a range of transformation agendas around data, housing, workforce, and wellbeing.

The Challenge Weekend is open to everyone working, studying or living in the Midlands.  You can apply as a team or as an individual. Teams must be 2-3 people.

Who can apply?

  • Working professionals
  • Care Managers and Care Staff
  • People with lived experience of care and support
  • University students
  • Entrepreneurs

“Without the Challenge, it would have been a much, much longer journey.  Maybe I’d have ended up burnt out as it’s really hard to run a start-up model by yourself.  The Challenge made it 100 times easier.”   Maaha Suleiman, 2019 Challenge Runner-up and CEO/Founder of

What’s planned for the Challenge Weekend?
Successful applicants will each be invited to a creative weekend of idea generation and prototype trialling in July 2022.

On arrival, we will match up participants to form a number of small multi-disciplined teams with a range of skill-sets and perspectives.  Each team will be asked to consider a challenge facing the care sector; a challenge identified by care providers or people with lived experience of care provision. The weekend will culminate in teams presenting their solutions to a judging panel of experts in social care.

  1. Starting with 12 teams, the weekend will end with teams presenting their projects to a judging panel of industry experts
  2. 5 teams with the highest quality ideas selected to go through to the final will receive £500 funding and mentoring
  3. The winning team will receive £1,000 in prize money and further mentoring

There will be expert advice and guidance available from CIH sponsors and founding supporters which include Royds Withy KingQCSPerson Centred SoftwareHome InsteadHilton Nursing Partners, Hallmark Care HomesGreensleeves Care,  Care Management Matters, BRAN Investment, Borough Care and apetito to help participants in developing their ideas.

Five teams will be selected to go through to the final. Each of these five teams will be offered further mentoring to develop their idea and receive £500 in prize money to help run initial testing and market research.  These teams will be invited to the Challenge Final at the 2022 Care Show in October 2022 to present their developed solution to the final judging panel.

The winning team will receive £1,000 in prize money, media coverage and further mentoring to develop their idea.

What 2019 Finalists said!

“I’ve just had the most amazing experience this weekend. We’ve all been inspired to believe in our ideas” Pearl Jordan, Challenge Participant 2019

“The energy in the room was great, there was a lot of enthusiasm, a lot of excitement.  It was a great area to be in with lawyers, entrepreneurs and care workers. Everyone from different backgrounds coming together and really bringing innovation and change into the social care sector.”  Faizah Akeil, Challenge Finalist 2019

 “I really hope these (ideas) can be replicated across industries because that’s what pushes a lot of innovation and change because that’s what we need.” Juliana Chipont, Challenge Participant 2019



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