Turn2Me, an Irish nonprofit firm, has explained how they use technology to increase access to mental healthcare in Ireland. Over 84 million individuals in the European Union are afflicted by mental health conditions, with billions around Ireland being one of the worst-hit nations. Considering this figure Turn2Me is on a mission to make mental healthcare more accessible with the use of technology. In an interview with the CEO, Fiona O’Malley illustrated how this is possible and what they have achieved so far.
How Turn2Me is Increasing Access to Mental Healthcare in Ireland
Speaking on how Turn2Me is increasing access to mental healthcare in Ireland, Fiona said their online-first, year-round free assistance helps them to reach people who might otherwise be excluded because of the cost of counseling services or their location.
She further stated that they collaborate with other nonprofits to spread the word about their programs among young people, LGBTQIA+ communities, and others in rural Ireland.
Increasing Access to Mental Healthcare with Technology
Fiona affirmed that technology is the core of what they do. Turn2me, being one of the first online mental health resources in the world, is an excellent illustration of how spending on technology can make individuals feel more heard and connected. They use awareness and timely access to help play a crucial part in mental health.
She pointed out that Turn2me has invested in a specially designed platform where their users can schedule private therapy sessions and support groups in addition to posting 24/7 in a controlled, safe environment. Meanwhile, Users of The Thought Catcher, a popular online mood journal among younger generations, can choose their mood, anonymously discuss sentiments, monitor mood swings, and receive encouraging words.
Additionally, the community is moderated by its skilled staff, who also directs users to useful services and information. At the same time, Turn2me also leverages Ad Grants to run advertisements on Google Search for free and reach a wider audience. Their sign-ups are dependent on word of mouth and online reach, and roughly 60% of their new website users come from ads.
In all, technology aids Turn2Me in operating smoothly and effectively. Since Turn2Me is a long-standing member of Google for Nonprofits, they have access to Google Workspace for Nonprofits, which enhances their operations and teamwork. For instance, Turn2Me uses Meet to frequently connect with other mental health NGOs and uncover synergies, and Docs to update their policy and exchange Board meeting minutes.
Turn2Me was financed in 2009 by Oisin and Diarmuid Scollard, six years after the suicide of their brother Cormac. The goal was to establish a secure environment where anyone in need may access online professional assistance.
The HSE National Office for Suicide Prevention gave Turn2Me their blessing in 2013, so they may offer therapy online. They have provided online one-to-one and group support services for more than 110,000 individuals over the years, and their website currently boasts 45,000 active users.