Venture Update: Cozy Co.
by Daniela Schwartz
“I have a sister who is five, so I thought, ‘What would I want for her in a big disaster?'”
-Avrelle Harrington, Founder and CEO of Cozy
That single question has led Harrington to partner with Elix to advance the development of her project, Cozy.
Cozy is a package, designed by Harrington, that contains personalizable items tailored to individual children that provide comfort and decrease stress in the event of a natural disaster. By thinking of her younger sister, Harrington was able to visualize how she wanted Cozy to be.
“I thought of [my sister] having something that she could go to when she is scared, that also can comfort her and make her feel safe,” Harrington said.
The Cozy package is made up of a backpack, water pouch, emergency food, safety kit, whistle, medical records, stuffed animal, and pre-written letters from the family. Adding a tracking device is also a possibility. Additionally, Cozy will include easy to read instructions and illustrations so that young children can understand emergency procedures.
According to Harrington, she came up with these items by researching what local schools use in their emergency package and other research.
Harrington and her partner Nadav Shenkar, a senior at University High School in San Francisco, who recently joined Harrington’s project, have reached out to Eric Rasmussen, CEO of Infinitum Humanitarian Systems. Because of Ramussen’s experience in developing impactful products, Harrington consulted with him on what to include to the package.
To launch her project, Harrington sought funding from Elix, the final step in developing her first prototype. She crafted a powerpoint outlining the cost of Cozy and why it’s a game changer for disaster relief.
The Elix staff loved the idea, saying that the product sounded realistic and innovative. Elix agreed to fund four prototypes of Cozy, which Harrington will then proceed to test during the summer. Each prototype will have different designs and arrangements of items.
“What stood out to me was that the relief [from the Cozy package] doesn’t only come from the physical objects within the package, but the interactions that the kids have with the package,” said Elix Founder Isabella Liu after hearing Harrington’s proposal. Indeed, the package’s top innovation is the comforting packaging of the disaster relief goods and accessible instructions for children.
Cozy will move into launch phase later this summer once Harrington has confirmed which prototype to use.