Best Projects 2018 features all the nominated entries submitted to the Youth Citizen Entrepreneurship Competition under ‘Submit your Project’ category. All the entries consist of innovative projects run by existing enterprises in the form of businesses, NGOs or informal programs. If you want to know the 10 finalists in this category click HERE
A revolution in the world of mental health - Runaway
Explain your project in details:
Currently we're working on 3 modules: 1. Hosting events and workshops focused around mental health. So far weve hosted a multitude of events on campus, that include educational talks about available services, a panel discussion hosted by mental health experts, and a "mental health fest" that featured student speakers, tables hosted by student groups, and yoga practice. These events have the ultimate aim of bringing people out of their comfort zone to participate in mental health initiatives. 2. A mobile app that will allow users to anonymously talk to our highly skilled and monitored set of volunteers from across the world. The app will provide users with a platform to vent out their emotions, talk about their problems, and seek encouragement. The whole motive behind the app is to provide users with an anonymous environment wherein they can share their challenges, thoughts, and feelings in 1-on-1 chat rooms, and be heard by our volunteers via active listening. This not only provides users with emotional relief, but also gets them in the habit of opening up to others and seeking help by reaching out. 3. Our carefully and passionately curated positivity zone that provides users with happy art, quotes, music, inspiring stories, etc. in order to life their spirits and bring some happiness to them. During our research, and individual attempts to find a good source of consolidated positivity, we often came back empty handed, and so we decided to do something to change that. We hope that, with every module that we are working on at Runaway, we can break the stigma, and thus make the world happier.
Impact of your enterprise on sustainable development
So far at Runaway, weve conducted over 250 conversations in the past 3 years, with a 100% success rate. Our founder was named 1 of 15 global members of Mental Health Americas first Youth Mental Health Innovation Council and 1 of 8 inspiring, young mental health activists in the world by Mashable. We currently have a team of 16 student volunteers. We also receive about 5 internships applications every month from students who want to join us. Runaway was accepted to the Koffman Southern Tier Incubators Accelerator Program where we were provided with mentorship and extensive product guidance. Our first 3 events have seen a combined attendance of over 500 students, faculty, and professionals. Our student ambassador program has generated international interest, with over 200 applications received in the first day. Runaway is making the world happier!
Sustainability and future plans
Our business model is multi-dimensional, and as such we will generate revenue through hosting paid public events and workshops, undertaking and selling mental health reports to universities based on their students' interactions with our app, paid website features for brands. For financing we're looking at Angel investors, mental health organizations, and fundraising. In the future, we're looking to have tie ups with Universities to integrate our platform into their servers and combine forces with their counsellors to provide the best mental health solution for students.
Your profile as an entrepreneur
I'm a highly motivated and ambitious junior displaying keen interest in entrepreneurship and management consulting. I constantly strive for learning opportunities to enhance my personal and professional development. My past experiences include working with several startups as a strategy consultant; internships with multinational companies such as Deloitte and JLL, and non-profit organisations like Round Square and Bachpan Bachao Andolan, performing a diverse range of roles and responsibilities; participating extensively in case competitions; being actively involved with various local, national and international clubs and organisations in various leadership positions; attending several international leadership programs and workshops; and most recently working on my own social entrepreneurial venture Runaway (runawayapp.com) that aims to promote mental health awareness and help those in need of emotional support. I have also always demonstrated a strong passion and desire to give back to society by undertaking many social initiatives that focus on rural empowerment, mental health, and collaborative learning. I've done so by leading social service projects in schools, colleges and villages in association with various national and international organizations. - Awarded the prestigious Freshman of the Year award by Binghamton University's School of Management. - Co-Founded and COO at Hush U, ex-COO at Trimmed. - Ex-President of Future Business Leaders of America Phi Beta Lambda. - 1 of 15 global members of Mental Health Americas first Youth Mental Health Innovation Council. - Named 1 of 8 inspiring, young mental health activists in the world by Mashable.