Dan Snaith, aka Caribou, explained how the winner was chosen:
We received over 500 emails from every corner of the world proposing myriad purposes for it – including an aeronautical engineering student who wanted to attach it to a rocket and fire it into space.
But right from the first time we read it, one proposal in particular grabbed our attention, and after researching the logistics of transporting this gentle giant halfway around the world, we are proud to announce the winner today:
Harry Marshall emailed us on behalf of a group of students at the Welsh School of Architecture, planning to help build a playground on the island of Koh Rong in Cambodia, together with non-profit organisation Friends of Koh Rong.
The Cambodian island of Koh Rong is certainly not the only island that is dealing with the effects of increased tourism but is one such example, where rapid change is presenting the local community with overwhelming challenges.
Friends of Koh Rong was set up in 2013 to help deal with exactly those problems through increasing ( the previously limited ) access to education, healthcare and increasing the community’s capacity to deal with the strain brought by more tourism:
“Our organisation aims to help in mitigating the negative impacts of the tourism industry, and to enable our beneficiaries to stand in the best possible position to benefit from the changes that have arrived on this island, their home.”
As tourist infrastructure has encroached on more and more space on the island, there is no place for the school aged children on the island to play. The playground, sitting next to the school set up by Friends of Koh Rong, will provide an area for the children to play and be safe. The creature will provide a centrepiece for the playground.
Harry and his team are raising money to complete this playground right now with construction due to begin towards the end of July – right around the time the multicoloured creature, which is just now being crated up and in preparation for its transpacific journey, will arrive on the island.
You can learn more and support the Friends of Koh Rong playground project by visiting their Kickstarter.