Bell is tak­ing on the world

Kapiti Observer - - FRONT PAGE -

Kapiti’s Ben­jamin Bell cre­ated his first in­ven­tion when he was just 12.

Ben­jamin Bell talks about his work so far, and what he plans to do now he’s fin­ished school at Para­pa­raumu Col­lege. He has pitched his in­ven­tion, Well­bands, to some of the big­gest names in health tech­nol­ogy at Stand­ford MedX, in Cal­i­for­nia.

You won the Youth award at The Wellys this year – how did that achieve­ment make you feel?

Win­ning was at first sur­pris­ing as the other fi­nal­ists in my cat­e­gory were so tal­ented. It gave me a sense of self-pride to achieve this award.

What in­spires you as an in­ven­tor?

My in­spi­ra­tion to be an in­no­va­tor is the abil­ity to cre­ate some­thing that has never been cre­ated be­fore, that can ben­e­fit some­one’s life, but can also be spread glob­ally to help peo­ple all around the world. We live in an amaz­ing era where you can wake up one day and your life can be hugely ben­e­fited by a brand new piece of tech­nol­ogy that didn’t ex­ist the day be­fore.

How did you come up with Well­bands?

I came up with my in­ven­tion Well­bands when I was 12 and my step-dad went into hos­pi­tal to have surgery. When we went to pick him up it was very hard to find him and we asked three dif­fer­ent hos­pi­tal staff where he was. It turned out he had been moved into a dif­fer­ent ward, cre­at­ing the con­fu­sion. It wasn’t till about a week later when I was fid­dling with his wrist­band and re­alised that these wrist­bands were plain and pretty use­less and I wanted to cre­ate some­thing more use­ful that helped find

Now you’ve fin­ished school, what’s next for you?

In 2017, I am­go­ing to take a year to work on Well­bands and other pos­si­ble en­trepreneurial projects as well as keep­ing my eye open for other op­por­tu­ni­ties, all while keep­ing my part-time job to save money.

This means in 2018 I will have money for a gap-year trip to Canada for a com­plete change of scene. From then on I’m not sure where life will take me and as of now I am­not con­cerned.

What ad­vice do you have for other young peo­ple look­ing to fol­low in your foot­steps?

Take ev­ery op­por­tu­nity that you can be­cause you never know where it might take you. Also to live life to the fullest.

Has your age cre­ated any ob­sta­cles for you?

Def­i­nitely, but age can cre­ate ob­sta­cles for any per­son. At the end of the day de­spite your age you have to demon­strate your ex­pe­ri­ence, courage and skills that make you stand out. I have to ad­mit, be­ing young, it is much harder to get your foot in the door, but you just have to find the right per­son who is will­ing to take a risk and let you in.

What mu­sic do you lis­ten to?

All sorts, but mainly Drake and G-Eazyy, main­stream rap.

If you could in­vite any­one, liv­ing or dead, to din­ner, who would it be and why?

It would have to be Ryan Reynolds. Mainly be­cause it wouldn’t be awk­ward. I as­sume he is the sort of per­son to al­ways cre­ate con­ver­sa­tion and would be a good laugh. I have al­ways had huge re­spect for him from a young age.

What would you serve them?

Pizza, be­cause who doesn’t like pizza? And to drink, a lime thick shake.

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