Pokemon Go, but for the environment.
That’s the idea behind a new app, Grow Kaha, dreamed up by two Queenstowners who want to change habits and fight back against climate change.
And their idea is getting support from major players, from the government to companies like Swazi.
Grow Kaha co-founder Jess Stall says they want the app to be “a catalyst in driving action”.
In the game, players will get points based on environmentally-friendly acts they do, from picking up cigarette butts to planting trees.
Those points will then be translated into real-world rewards at a variety of businesses.
“It’s important to make it relevant to everybody, ap-proachable and tangible.”
The game will also feature a strong educational component, she says, as well as providing information about events and community action to create links.
The turning point for the pair was watching Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s speech at the United Nations last September, where she spoke about climate change.
“That was our call to action,” Stall says.
Co-founder Elena Fitzgerald says her son, Jack, also helped spark the idea.
“I refused to allow Jack to inherit a home worse than the one I brought him into,” she says. “I thought, ‘there has to be a way out of this’.”
They’ve applied for funding through the government’s Provincial Growth Fund, and Fitzgerald says they’ve had interest from the Ministry for Primary Industries.
They’ve also got some big names on board already.
Grow Kaha’s chairman is Ross Hanson, who’s also deputy chairman of the Otago Rugby Football Union. And they’ve got financial backing from Kiwi IT company, Jade World.