Espai Obert, an alternative service to institutionalization for people with severe psychosocial disabilities.

Espai Obert, an alternative service to institutionalization for people with severe psychosocial disabilities.

Fundació Support-Girona Foundation and Healthcare Assistance Institute (IAS)

Alternative resource to institutionalization for people with severe psychosocial disabilities, which offers them social and health support based on the pact and their free will to use the services of the facility.

It is aimed at people who are in a situation of social exclusion and even homelessness, due to mental and behavioral disorders or substance abuse problems, and who have no family or social support or financial resources,

Espai Obert aims to reduce the stigma of these people and overcome the barriers that stand in the way of their social and community inclusion. The intervention methodology is based on low demand and free use.

As a first phase of intervention, the aim is to cover the basic needs of hygiene and food. Therefore, the service is equipped with a kitchen, living and dining room, washing machines, patio and shower and hygiene areas, and the users participate in the routines of the center (preparing meals, laundry, taking care of the garden…). Once this first phase has been achieved, a bond of trust is built, in order to work on the development, skills and well-being of each person, as well as socialization with other people in the space and other resources in the area.

This pioneering intervention model is one of the tools to be deployed in Catalonia in the process of reconversion and transformation of long-stay psychiatric hospitalization with functional recovery and life project units based on the successful experience of the counties of Girona, where in 2004 the long-stay psychiatric hospital in the former Salt Psychiatric Hospital was closed, generating a network of community mental health and addiction services, with alternative resources.


Leaves, an online bereavement support service for older adults.

Leaves, an online bereavement support service for older adults.

Leaves

Online program to support the eldery who are grieving the loss of a spouse. The focus of the program is on exploring new ways of self-care, to encourage positive thinking through finding strengths and ways to feel comfortable, active and joyful.

Leaves consists of 10 modules containing reading material and exercises that help bereaved people reflect on their current situation and how they can adjust to life without a partner. In addition, it also provides indirect support to close family members and informal caregivers. That is, with the support of the bereaved, families and close relatives can reduce worry and stress.

The developed model also has a virtual assistant called SOL (virtual abstract conversational entity). This agent does navigational support and guides users from readings and exercises to final reflections and users’ state of mind.

The program is dedicated to providing people with learning experiences and information on topics such as common grief reactions, prolonged bereavement, and assessment of the bereaved situation. It is a support for life adjustment after the loss, trying to give new meaning and find some hope within the new situation.

Crisis text line, suicide prevention through artificial intelligence

Crisis text line, suicide prevention through artificial intelligence

Crisis Text Line

Suicide prevention hotline which, in addition to offering accompaniment, emotional support and home interventions to thousands of people going through difficult situations, has an algorithm that allows the service’s volunteers to identify which people are at high risk of suicide and therefore need more urgent intervention.

The service works in such a way that the person in crisis sends a message saying “HOME” to the number 741741, and a specialised volunteer responds quickly and in real time. The service goes out of its way to help people in times of distress or crisis by listening to them, reassuring them, and offering suggestions for overcoming their difficulties.

As a service that receives thousands of requests, deciding who to help first in times of floods of messages can be a life-or-death decision. That’s why Crisis Text Line uses an algorithm to identify people at high risk of suicide and to be able to intervene as quickly as possible in these cases.

Using machine learning, the artificial intelligence algorithm analyses the words and emojis that may indicate that a person is at high risk of suicidal ideation or self-harm. The system developed is based on the analysis of 30 million messages that the service has exchanged with users in recent years, and is thus able to position as an emergency those conversations with high-risk patterns that need to be attended to more urgently. As a result, 94% of people at serious and imminent risk of suicide receive an intervention in less than 5 minutes.

In addition, the data collected provides the service with very relevant information about the mental health of the clients. For example, it has concluded that Wednesday is the most anxiety provoking day of the week, and that self-harm crises occur mainly in the early hours of the morning.

Inclusively, a digital job search platform for people with disabilities

Inclusively, a digital job search platform for people with disabilities

Inclusively

Inclusively, plataforma digital de cerca de feina per a persones amb discapacitat

Image from Inclusively.

Digital platform for the labor inclusion of people with disabilities, whether physical, intellectual, sensory or mental illness. It connects people with disabilities with companies committed to providing jobs adapted to their needs. In addition, it also has job counselors who work directly with candidates to improve their profile and accompany them in their job research.

The platform works in such a way that candidates can filter job offers according to the conditions they need, for example, physical accessibility, screen readers, flexible working hours, etc. The goal is that companies, no matter what size they are, offer the right jobs based on the skills, abilities and experience of each candidate.

On the other hand, in order to guarantee the right working conditions for the jobs, the platform offers training to companies so that they can adapt their work environments so that workers with disabilities can develop their full potential.

It is a platform that offers equal opportunities in job research to people with disabilities, as well as the opportunity for companies to find talent and experience among these group of people.

Inclusively

Woebot, self-help chat for dealing with mental and emotional discomfort

Woebot, self-help chat for dealing with mental and emotional discomfort

Woebot Health

Image from Woebot

A chatbot that helps to manage moods, learn about oneself and cope with mental and emotional distress.

In a cognitive behavioural therapy framework, Woebot asks the user how they are feeling and what is going on in their life in a short conversation format. Woebot also talks about mental health and emotional well-being, and shares videos and other useful tools to address the user’s mood and other needs related to their mental and emotional well-being. Woebot is like a self-help book that adapts to each person’s different needs and concerns.

Woebot uses a combination of natural language processing, psychological expertise, excellent writing and a sense of humour to create an informative and friendly conversational experience.

In a study conducted by Stanford University, Woebot use was shown to generate significant reductions in anxiety and depression, primarily in people aged 18-28 who had spoken to Woebot on a near-daily basis.

Woeboth Health

SOM Salut Mental 360, digital platform to guide, accompany and raise awareness of mental health issues

SOM Salut Mental 360, digital platform to guide, accompany and raise awareness of mental health issues

Sant Joan de Déu

Image from Pexels.

A digital platform based on co-creation between users, family members, healthcare professionals, the social sector and the educational environment, and the general public, which aims to inform, accompany, empower and raise awareness of mental health.

The portal incorporates up-to-date content in the field of mental health and will progressively expand the diversity of formats. The aim is to create an intelligent platform that offers content adapted to the preferences of the individual and generates an optimal user experience. In addition, users are the main prescribers of the platform, making it a reliable and secure source of information for anyone who needs accurate information on the field of mental health.

SOM Salut Mental 360 currently offers digital meetings, expert consultation sessions, witnesses from health professionals, users, family members, educators and associations, as well as informative and monographic articles, among others. All the information on the platform is reviewed by a multidisciplinary scientific committee to guarantee the veracity of the information.

The project also offers thematic portals where you can find all the information on a topic or pathology. The first three are focused on eating disorders (ED), autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and depressive disorders.

SOM Salud Mental 360

Apptu@, an app that helps break isolation and alleviate stigma in mental health

Apptu@, an app that helps break isolation and alleviate stigma in mental health

Grup ATRA

Image from the Grup ATRA website.

Innovative, interactive and close mobile app that allows for more continuous, close and close contact between users, professionals and volunteers of three mental health programs: Actua, Actua Jove and Actua Dona. This app also aims to raise public awareness about the collective suffering from mental health problems, while providing information that may be of interest to all citizens.

The three programmes included in Apptu@ are community-based, integrative and care-focused that provide support for life in a self-employed capacity for people with issues resulting from mental disorder, as well as women who have also suffered or suffer from male violence in parallel. With Apptu@, social contact between beneficiary and voluntary persons is enhanced.

The application is divided into two parts: one public and one private. Within the public, which is destined for any individual in society – such as people from the mental health collective, health professionals and the social sector, people interested in volunteering, relatives, students, young people, collaborating administrations, etc. – you can know the Actua programmes, as well as the different services and resources that form the Grup ATRA. It also attempts to promote inclusive volunteering and networking. But basically, the app aims to give visibility to the people of the mental health collective, as this helps to break stereotypes and alleviate stigma.

As far as the private part is concerned, Apptu@ allows one to work agreements and goals individually with the users of the program, following them more directly and continuously over time and making them participants of the common project that is Actua.

Apptu@

CIRCLES, online psycho-social therapy groups of people suffering from similar situations

CIRCLES, online psycho-social therapy groups of people suffering from similar situations

Circles, San Francisco (USA)

Image taken from Unsplash.

Application that offers online support groups to help people struggling with mental and emotional health issues.

Through the use of artificial intelligence technology, Circles asks users a series of questions that allow them to relate automatically to groups of other people who are going through life-like problems: personality problems. or mental health, the sudden loss of a relative, a situation of sexist violence, permanent care of a dependent person, difficulties with raising children, the breakup of the couple, etc. Within these groups of eight people, a professional facilitator is assigned to help participants share their situation.

The aim is to get participants to share their stories and to generate a stable space for conversation and encounter between them that allows them to support each other from similar situations they have suffered.

During the Covid-19 pandemic, which paralyzed people’s ability to connect with others, Circles offered thousands of people the opportunity to find relief and mutual encouragement.

Circles is a private paid service. The first week of group therapy is free, and for the following ones you have to pay about € 26 per week.

Circles

MK360, immersive technology for the care and welfare of older people

MK360, immersive technology for the care and welfare of older people

Broomx and Grup Arrels

Users of the Grup Arrels enjoying an immersive experience. Retrieved from Broomx’s website.

Projector that allows immersive group experiences of 360 degrees to the range of services, residences, and open centres for older people to perform cognitive, physical, sensorial, and emotional stimulation activities with great therapeutic power.

Thanks to the collaboration between the Catalan company Broomx and the Foundation Grup Arrels, they have fostered diverse experiences of application of immersive technology MK360 in old users of different services: treatment of people with cognitive disorders, dementia and Alzheimer’s; the creation of relaxing spaces where music and images surround the users; funny and energizing experiences, such as the projection of a roller coaster tour; or the recreation of city sites in an immersive way, an experience that has been especially useful during the months of residential confinement due to Covid-19.

The 360-degree images that the Grup Arrels projected through the projectors MK360 of Broomx were recorded by the group’s own socio-sanitary professionals, using their mobile phones, in community and neighbourhood spaces (parks, markets, streets, etc.) in the city of Barcelona.

Broomx

Ipso, international service of psychosocial peer-to-peer support

Ipso, international service of psychosocial peer-to-peer support

International Psychosocial Organization (Ipso)

Peer-to-peer counselling session. Retrieved from Ipso’s website.

International mental health service and psychosocial support for peer-to-peer which offers offline and online in more than 20 languages (such as Arabic, Farsi, Punjabi, among others), and which today has more than 200,000 beneficiaries, mostly people who are immigrants, refugees or victims of armed conflicts.

Ipso counsellors are other persons of the same origin who are previously formed in Value Based Counselling, a type of short-term intervention that seeks to establish empathy with the person concerned and to support them without prejudice. In addition, the sociocultural plurality that allows this methodology makes it easier to adapt it to different contexts and to give service to a very high and diverse number of users.

It is a peer-to-peer service, which serves to empower both parties, and which at the same time seeks to prevent the hardships or traumatic situations that have been experienced from becoming chronic or leading to more serious problems, while helping in social integration.

Ipso services have spread widely in some countries such as Afghanistan, where it is present throughout the country through the public health service. The training of the counsellors is done mainly in Germany, in the headquarters of Ipso in Berlin, Erfurt and Hamburg, where they prepare people who are immigrated to do so. In other countries, such as Jordan, Iraq, Haiti and others, the Ipso service has also been extended through collaborating organisations.

Psychosocial support sessions can be performed face-to-face but also online through a secure video platform called ipso-care.com, and this has allowed the territorial scope of Ipso to become much broader, and at the same time indispensable during the Covid-19 pandemic.

It is available in more than twenty languages, such as Arabic, Farsi, English, French, Russian, Turkish, Punjabi and others, because it is considered vitally important that people who receive this service can express themselves in their mother tongue.

International Psychosocial Organization (Ipso)