Auckland entrepreneur Jason Armishaw has spearheaded the establishment of Lifehack, a new government-funded initiative aimed at combating youth mental health problems. Up to 75 youth will come together for a series of weekend events in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin in April to come up with ideas. The most promising three or four will get funding (of an amount yet to be decided) and coaching.
‘“I believe that youth know youth problems better than anyone else. So why not give them a chance to solve them?,” says Armishaw. “Young people can and will use the tools they’re already familiar with: digital devices, social media networks and a natural ability to bond with technology in a way that our parents never will.”
In the longer term Armishaw hopes the developed solutions can be offered to mental health organisations in New Zealand and offshore. The solutions could include web and mobile applications, and games.’
Lifehack’s mission is, “to create sustainable technology solutions to combat New Zealand’s youth mental illness problems. New Zealand’s fight for youth mental health and wellbeing needs a fresh approach, and we believe digital technology – created by students for students – will play a key part in the solution.
Our dream is to build a self-sustaining environment where digital solutions are created locally by young people, developed over a three-month program in our lab, integrated into local organisations, then pushed out internationally to similar organisations who need what we create. LIFEHACK will facilitate this reality.”
Visit the interactive website here.
View the article on Stuff about the launch here.