The cruel irony of depression is that, when things are at their worst, that’s often the time when it’s hardest to ask for help. Hannah Lucas is only 16, but she knows this firsthand, thanks to a suicide attempt that, thankfully, her mom walked in on and prevented. Then she was able to cry out: “I can’t handle this anymore. I can’t take it,” Hannah told Now This. “And in the midst of all the chaos, I just cried out, ‘I wish that I had an app.'”
Because she knew how hard it was to speak up about her mental heath struggles, super-teen Hannah wanted to help others who were suffering. So she teamed up with her younger brother and some developers to create notOK, which lets users send an automated text to preselected contacts—”Hey, I’m not okay. Please call me, text me, or come find me”—and shares their GPS location.
The app lets users send an automated text to preselected contacts—”Hey, I’m not okay. Please call me, text me, or come find me”—and shares their GPS location.
Since its launch earlier this year, the $2-per-month app has been downloaded thousands of times. “It’s basically the product everybody asks for silently,” Hannah says. “That everybody thinks they need but doesn’t really want to reach out and ask for because of the stigma surrounding mental health.”
After years of battling depression, 15-year-old Hannah Lucas created an app to help people reach out for help
Posted by NowThis Her on Thursday, May 17, 2018
With the growing rate of depression in the United States, having a tech-savvy option that tells the people you love that you need help—particularly when you don’t feel like you can—is a powerful tool when you feel alone, afraid, and at your absolute lowest.
In creating notOK, Hannah has joined the ranks of other teens using technology to change the future of wellness for the better. As long as these young adults keep at it, our future is looking healthier than ever.
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