Proactive about the Health of Seniors Team
From second on the left and top row: Ayah, Lissa, Nimo, Paula, Rand, Sayoojya.  
Kinesiology is often concerned about helping people recover movement, but fourth year kinesiology student Sayoojya Saju is more interested in taking a proactive approach. She is interested in safety and has worked in the field during her co-op positions. This interest led her to attend the 2017 Hack 4 Health with its focus on improving the lives of people living with dementia or MS.
 
At the hackathon, Sayoojya decided to work with other similarly minded people on the problem of elderly people falling when they forgot to put the brakes on their rollators (wheeled walkers). By the end of the hackathon their project—developing and manufacturing an automated braking system that could be retrofitted onto existing rollators or incorporated into a new design—had garnered them a term at GreenHouse for one team member among other prizes.
 
Over the last year, the team worked with a clinician, engineering professors and graduate students to develop a prototype for their company, Qoltom.
 
Although they were well underway, this fall, Sayoojya moved into GreenHouse and says being part of the program has been extremely beneficial. 
“Everyone here is so passionate about what they are doing and supportive of one another. I have learned a lot about social innovation through the GreenHouse course.”
Qoltom has refined their prototype and are working on their business model and IT agreements, while Sayoojya herself is challenged by balancing school and “doing everything I can for the venture.” She’s also trying to figure out what her own involvement will be once she graduates. “Whatever I do, I want to continue to try to make a difference as I have with this venture,” she says.  And her Qoltom and GreenHouse experiences are another way of being proactive. “The lessons I’ve learned here will definitely be useful even in another field.”
 
Team member summaries:
Ayah Ali:
Master in Public Health (current)

Lissa Kuzych:
Practicing Occupational Therapist for over 15 years
 
Paula He:
4th year Kinesiology
 
Rand Chaban:
GDip in Health Informatics (current)
 
Nimo Omar:
BSc in Science,
currently doing postgraduate studies in Social work and legal studies

 

 

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