This method helped us to find more information to develop our product with deeper knowledge. By consulting different articles and documents we gained more knowledge and data about our central topic.
We proved that this problem really exists and that a project of this kind can really make a difference in people’s lives. Our key insight was that it’s crucial to talk about mental health with children as early as possible.
From years of experience as psychologists, our clients know the best way to talk about mental health problems, especially with the youth. The specialists selected some of the main difficulties teenagers of that age might be going through.
So, the goal of the project SMS is to empower the youth to be resilient to mental health issues in the future. For this reason, the experts created this SMS e Saúde platform to help develop skills that could help them socialize and regulate emotions, when facing new challenges.
After a better understanding of the client’s vision, we structured the project into 2 distinct parts: a public website and a private area for SMS program users.
The website would be for public access and contain not only informative and useful content about the SMS Program, and mental health helplines, but also a Forum for sharing and discussing mental health topics.
The private area was designed to be accessed by SMS program participants. Together with the client, we defined the user types: pupils, guardians and teachers.
The focus was on the pupil's area. We intended it to be a didactic yet fun platform that would motivate students to participate, learn and complete the exercises in the program. And ideally, encourage them to put what they have learned into practice in their daily lives.
The more aware and educated parents are, the quicker and easier they can help their children. That is why having a private area for parents where they can learn about different disorders and how to deal and be supportive was so important.
To achieve a successful visual communication with the Gez Z’s, we knew that we had to work with visually stimulating colors. Here, the design challenge was to make a serious topic visually light, youthful and appealing to the younger audience and their educators. We accomplished our goal by creating a warm and vivid color palette to promote a comfortable feeling while interacting with the platform.
To make content easier to understand and more attractive we used illustrations of young people so the teenagers could identify themselves with these characters.
As our target audience was teenagers, SMS program experts had to be very picky with the words used in the texts of the platform. We wanted to create a friendly and cheering tone of voice so the teen would consider the platform as a “peer that doesn’t judge” and not as an adult that tells you what to do.
They did it in a few different ways, for example when a pupil chooses the wrong answer SMS platform encourages them to try again and further explains the correct answer. But when they get it right, the platform celebrates their success.
Mental Health topics usually have a lot of difficult terms but those are explained through real-life examples that pupils are going through.
The theoretical part is the core of any subject. But we all know that the most fun part is the practical one. No more conventional teaching! Besides its energy, Generation Z is distinguished by its unmatched connection with technology. To meet their wants and needs, we introduced the content in multiple and surprising formats. They go from video, audio, and quizzes to multiple types of games. Learning has never been so fun!
“When in Rome do what Romans do”. We’ve just entered the world of teenagers. What do they like to do? Which would be the best way to get them to interact and learn? That’s how SMS came up with the gamification feature. For motivation purposes, our client wanted the student to earn points and badges as he completed the sessions and did the exercises.
However, our team suggested another solution — create another world with points (coins), jewels and crowns. How does it work? A set of coins gives the right to a jewel. Each student has a crown and the goal is to fill it with jewels. The idea is that the pupil is building something as he progresses.
Now we’re speaking the same language as our young adventurers! Scoring in the form of coins, crowns and vibrant jewelry brings the real sparkle to the platform.
The platform eSaúde aims to be a solution to a very pressing problem, such as the low awareness of young people and their parents to the important issue of mental health. We are certain that this tool will have a great social impact and we couldn't be prouder to have developed this tool with the team from the University of Coimbra.