Announcing the 2016 Winners of the Innovation Next Awards: 10 Teams Will Receive $80,000 Each to Develop Sex Education for the 21st Century

Mar 31 2016

(Washington, DC)—The Innovation Next Awards, a program of The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy through a grant from the Health and Human Services Office of Adolescent Health, today announced the winners of its inaugural round of funding. These 10 projects have been chosen to receive $80,000 to develop innovative technology interventions for preventing teen pregnancy.

“Sex education needs to meet teens where they are,” said Lawrence Swiader, Vice President of Digital Media at The National Campaign. “We know it needs to be relevant, real, and maybe even a little radical. Our winning project teams understand this and will use technology and communication techniques in completely new ways.”

In addition to the $80,000 that each team will receive, they will also be invited to attend immersive workshops on design thinking from renowned global design company IDEO. This will provide an opportunity to immediately apply design thinking towards their projects. Following the workshops, five of the 10 teams will go on to win up to $325,000 to further develop their idea into a testable resource.

“In order to achieve long-term results in unplanned pregnancy prevention, we must create programs and resources that truly engage the people we are trying to reach,” said Kate Lydon, Public Sector Portfolio Director at IDEO. “Our goal—and the goal of Innovation Next—is to use technology to turn engagement into behavior change...and we believe our first group of winners will do that.”

The National Campaign, along with key partner IDEO, hopes that the Innovation Next Awards will establish a discipline for design and encourage successful approaches for teen pregnancy prevention.

“Uncovering innovative approaches to difficult problems like unplanned pregnancy isn’t easy,” said Evelyn M. Kappeler, Director of the HHS Office of Adolescent Health. “By investing in technology as a part of the solution, we hope information for young people stays current, compelling, and effective.”

The complete list of winners is:

  • The It Kit created by Margot Mausner, Maggie Gaudsen, and Julian Gindi
  • Love Life Rules created by Cindy Carraway-Wilson, Sixto M. Cancel, and Somiah Lattimore
  • Don’t Make It Weird created by Susan E. Williams, Becky Reitzes, and Annie Hoopes
  • Boink created by Francisco Ramirez, Will Luxion, and Elise Schuster
  • Juntos created by Helen (Hua) Wang, Hector Ceballos, and Laura Davis
  • VizClinic created by Bhupendra Sheoran, Alex Medina, and Vianey Twyford
  • MySexEd created by Liz Chen, Vichi Jagannathan, and Cristina Leos
  • An Instant Gratification Situation created by Liz Romer, Lauren Butts, and Stephanie Begun
  • Hablemos created by Julie Yegen, Eliana Loveluck, and Laura Lourenco
  • Starting the Conversation created by Breione St. Claire, Dannelle Pietersz, and Amber Eisenmann

# # #

About The Innovation Next Awards

This opportunity is made possible by Grant Number TP2AH000023-01-00 from the HHS Office of Adolescent Health. Contents are solely the responsibility of The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Department of Health and Human Services or the Office of Adolescent Health. Learn more at  

About The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy

The National Campaign is a private, non-profit organization that seeks to improve the lives and future prospects of children and families by preventing teen and unplanned pregnancy.  Please visit to find out more.