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This 25-year-old S’porean Built An App To Promote Mental Health – Saw 2.5M Users In 2 Years

It’s no shock that for the reason that onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, the subject of mental health has been on the forefront of many conversations. While that’s an encouraging signal, the dialogue surrounding mental health in our Asian context does differ barely.

It would possibly shock many who mental health does look very completely different in the East as opposed to the West. Even although we’re knowledgeable about phrases like ‘self-care’ and recognise that we is perhaps languishing, there are nonetheless points that wants to be addressed in phrases of accessibility, stigma, and notion when it comes to mental health.

With these in thoughts, Theodoric Chew, the 25-year-old CEO and co-founding father of Intellect app, sought to bridge these gaps and normalise caring for one’s mental wellbeing.

How Intellect happened

Theodoric Chew CEO and co-founding father of Intellect / Image credit score: Intellect

Before constructing the Intellect app in 2019, Theodoric first recognized three challenges dealing with the mental health scene.

One of a very powerful elements is the fee. After all, it’s no secret that looking for therapists or psychologists price a reasonably penny. In truth, looking for skilled assist continues to be a luxurious that not everybody can afford.

The second concern and largest concern, as Theodoric places it, is the stigma surrounding mental health. “Asians typically see mental health as an extreme case scenario, relating therapy to things like schizophrenia and even suicidal thoughts,” he defined.

The final hurdle is the scarcity of mental health practitioners throughout the area. Apparently, Singapore has one of many lowest provides in comparability to many different developed cities around the globe.

With all these in thoughts, Theodoric determined {that a} mental health app like Intellect is required now greater than ever.

Besides attempting to fill these gaps, Theodoric additionally has a private stake in creating Intellect. During his youthful years, Theodoric has gone by means of his fair proportion of mental health challenges with nervousness and panic assaults.

I USED TO BE LUCKY SUFFICIENT TO HAVE ENTRY TO REMEDY WHICH NOT SOLELY HELPED ME DEAL WITH THESE POINTS, BUT ADDITIONALLY HELPED ME TURN INTO A GREATER MODEL OF MYSELF. THAT EXPERTISE MADE ME REALISE THE SIGNIFICANCE OF MENTAL HEALTH PROPERLY-BEING AND HAVING ACCESSIBILITY TO THE REQUIRED CARE.

– Theodoric Chew, CEO and co-founding father of Intellect

With his private expertise and obvious shortfalls of Asia’s mental health area, constructing an app like Intellect was a no-brainer. So, how precisely does Intellect try to bridge these gaps?

How Intellect advantages each companies and the people

Screenshots of Intellect app / Image Credit: Intellect

Intellect affords an end-to-end, 24/7 mental healthcare system in a single app.

The workforce centered on two targets, scaling accessibility to help it doesn’t matter what is required and shifting the narrative of mental health.

“We’re educating users that mental wellbeing is for everyone. You don’t need to be in a critical state to start working on who you are,” mentioned Theodoric.

Indeed, what Intellect is attempting to do is to emphasise that everybody is on a mental health spectrum that ranges from wholesome to reasonable and scientific, and mental health ought to be handled with equal significance as bodily health.

MOST OF THE INHABITANTS IS USUALLY IN THE REASONABLE VARY AND EXPERIENCES THE EVERYDAY STRESS, NERVOUSNESS AND BURNOUT THAT ARE HALF AND PARCEL OF ON A REGULAR BASIS LIFE. OUR MISSION IS, SUBSEQUENTLY, TO DESTIGMATISE MENTAL HEALTH IN ASIA, AND EDUCATE THE PLENTY THAT MENTAL HEALTHCARE IS FOR EVERYBODY

– Theodoric Chew, CEO and co-founding father of Intellect

Besides that, Intellect can also be centered on constructing a greater you. The app focuses on fostering resilience and serving to users not solely enhance, however excel as an particular person.

Like all good issues, the interior work that Intellect needs users to do takes effort and time. Intellect begins by serving to them be extra self-conscious of the place they’re on the mental health spectrum and understanding what their key wants and issues are.

Self-care and administration are then ready to turn into extra directed and efficient with a deeper stage of self consciousness.

Theodoric went on to liken self-care to taking nutritional vitamins for one’s mental health, which may help enhance resilience.

“Our self-help and skills building program therefore focuses on proactive care which helps reduce the escalation towards the clinical spectrum.”

Enhancing mental health in the office

Image Credit: Facebook Singapore

Intellect doesn’t search to simply assist an particular person with their mental wellbeing. It additionally works with organisations to present clinically-based mostly digitised remedy programmes, behavioural health teaching, alongside telehealth companies.

THE PANDEMIC HAS MADE FIRMS IN ASIA TURN INTO EXTRA DELICATE AND CONSCIOUS OF THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THEIR STAFF’ MENTAL WELLBEING. ORGANISATIONS HAVE COME TO REALISE THAT THEIR STAFF’ OFFICE SATISFACTION AND PRODUCTIVENESS ARE LINKED TO THEIR MENTAL HEALTH AND WELLBEING.

– Theodoric Chew, CEO and co-founding father of Intellect

The demand for organisations to maintain their staff is now at an all-time excessive. Theodoric has seen companies for Intellect on the business-to-business (B2B) entrance with an engagement charge 30 instances larger than worker help programmes’ (EAPs) utilisation charge. 

Covid-19 has clearly engendered main shifts in the best way we work and altered our relationship with it. Many organisations have revised their work preparations with some going fully distant, whereas some undertake the hybrid type of working.

With all these modifications and uncertainty, it’s no surprise why we’re additionally going by means of a mental health disaster of types. In the Asia Pacific, mental health issues are the second-largest health concern in phrases of years misplaced to incapacity.

“On an organisational level, employees’ mental wellbeing is directly linked to their productivity and satisfaction at work. On the economic level, it can pose a huge health burden,” mentioned Theodoric firmly.

“In Singapore alone, nine in 10 people reported a decline in mental health since the pandemic hit us.”

When it comes to hustle tradition, nobody wears the badge of working on a regular basis extra proudly than Singaporeans. It’s not a stretch to say that fairly a variety of us don’t have the healthiest relationship with work. With the pandemic, these strains get even blurred and our lives are totally consumed by it.

With suicide charges reaching an all-time excessive in eight years, our mental health turns into a extra urgent concern than ever.

A vote of confidence and future plans

Intellect is now one of many quickest-rising mental health tech firms throughout Asia and the world.

To date, it has crossed 2.5 million app users and signed greater than 20 enterprise shoppers to their company mental health advantages resolution.

In 2020, Google additionally named Intellect as one of many 5 finest private development apps of the yr. 

Intellect has raised US$3 million (S$4.1 million) funding to date. Its latest Pre-Series A funding spherical earlier in August was led by present investor Insignia Ventures Partners, together with new traders Y Combinator and XA Network.

Investment additionally got here from new and present angel traders together with Rainforest co-founder and CEO JJ Chai, Prenetics & CircleDNA founder and CEO Danny Yeung, Google Global HR Operations Director Gilberto Gaeta, and different massive tech executives, together with household workplace funds.

It is certainly a vote of confidence for Intellect and the mental health scene in Singapore and Asia.

WE WILL USE THE FUNDS TO DEVELOP OUR PRESENCE THROUGHOUT ASIA PACIFIC, DEVELOP OUR WORKFORCE, AND ONBOARD EXTRA SPECIALISTS. WE ARE WITNESSING HOVERING DEMAND IN THIS AREA AS SOCIETIES AND ORGANISATIONS HAVE GOTTEN EXTRA CONSCIOUS AND SUPPORTIVE OF PROACTIVE MENTAL HEALTHCARE.

HENCE, WE INTENTION TO MAKE INVESTMENTS IN REFINING OUR PRODUCT TO FINEST MATCH OUR USERS’ WANTS THROUGHOUT ASIA.

– Theodoric Chew, CEO and co-founding father of Intellect

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