Posted: 22 January 2018

Tech for good

Using technology to do good

Last night we launched the next phase of our challenge to get start-up tech companies involved with improving the lives of young people. We’ve been working with Bethnal Green Ventures (BGV) since summer of last year to encourage tech initiatives to launch software and apps that will help at-risk young people. 

Submissions are now open for applications, with the winning team set to receive £20,000 of investment funding, an intensive 12-week programme of mentoring and support from BGV, and access to large groups of young people and practitioners through our networks.

For at-risk young people experiencing multiple challenges in their lives, there can be huge gaps in the support they receive. Problems are too often ignored or overlooked and young people are continuing to struggle to find adequate support for a multitude of needs.

The brains behind Mind Moose, last year’s winning tech venture, identified the wide gap in young people’s access to mental health services and also the stigma often attached to seeking help for a mental health problem. After working with us and Bethnal Green Ventures, Mind Moose was launched and the platform aims to teach children how to keep their mind healthy.

How tech can make a difference

Technology is everywhere and is relatively easy to access for most children in the UK – this can be a double edged sword. Overexposure to social media has come under intense scrutiny lately, potentially putting children in danger and affecting their mental health. However, technology can reach into homes where previously health care and social networks have not been and children can feel empowered to get the help they need.

As well as a growing use of mental health apps, there’s an increase in young people using chatbots to access advice and information that is specifically tailored to young people. Ally is a chatbot that connects young people to relevant and tailored information about housing, benefits and employment.

Find out more and listen to our podcast.

Get involved

There are numerous ways that technology can improve the lives of children and young people and if you can think of just one, then it’s worth getting involved in our programme to deliver the service to those who need it most.

The 12-week accelerator programme runs twice a year and applications for the programme are now open.

            Apply today

The deadline for applications is 23:59 BST on 5 February 2018.

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