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Lifehack social innovation lab to improve youth wellbeing

15th August 2014

Lifehack launches a social innovation lab to improve youth wellbeing

“We are thrilled to have twenty of New Zealand’s brightest young people from around the country join us in Wellington today to begin Lifehack Labs. It’ll be five weeks of intensive learning, research, mentoring, coaching and prototyping of technology projects, but really it is just the start of the journey for many of them.” says Lifehack co-Lead, Chelsea Robinson.

The Labs experience brings together a range of disciplines such as design, entrepreneurship, social innovation, and technology and runs from 15 August until 19 September. This social lab is the first of its kind in New Zealand which aims to improve the wellbeing of young New Zealanders through technology and entrepreneurship. Unlike an accelerator programme, applicants enter Labs as individuals, and form teams and ventures around ideas during the lab with a specific social focus.

“We’re helping people build resilient teams who are able and willing to take these technology ideas to scale, and impact the lives of thousands of Kiwis. We’re excited to be kicking off the Lab and supporting the next wave of leaders working on youth wellbeing in the digital age through rapidly advancing technology and social media.”

“With around 40% of the Kiwi population likely to experience depression in their lives, and New Zealand experiencing some of the lowest youth wellbeing rankings in the OECD, we need more skilled people actively working on the biggest problems in our society using a range of toolkits to help them develop new ideas and build on what’s already working around the country.”

Lifehack partnered with Trade Me to run the Lab in their iconic space on Market Lane in Wellington. Lifehack is also working with organisations like entrepreneur hub SODA Inc from Hamilton, Queensland University of Technology, and social enterprise network Enspiral. Labs has attracted mentors from academia, the corporate sector, not-for-profits and the blossoming social enterprise scene in Wellington.

Lifehack is part of the Prime Minister’s Youth Mental Health Project, which also funded projects like Common Ground and SPARX. Follow the developments on the Lifehack blog and social media at:

Lifehack Labs is a 5 week, design-led bootcamp to kickstart impact projects for youth wellbeing. Labs is a full-time journey for our brightest minds to come together to build new, relevant technology to drive tools & solutions to complex social challenges.

The 5 week long Labs experience with a blend of world leading research and insights from the best of positive psychology, lean startup, UX, design thinking, team development, leadership, social innovation and personal wellbeing.

Partners include Enspiral, Ministry for Social Development, Trade Me and SODA Inc.

The participants for this inaugural Lifehack Lab cohort are: Aaron Intemann, Ahmed Hilali, Alexanda Whitcombe, Caroline Fitzgerald, Gemma Potaka, Jade Shearstone, Jamie Emery, Jessica Ducey, John Park, Katie Catchpole, Michael Smith, Nanz Nair, Nathan Mitchell, Ryan Angus, Siddhant Menon, Skye Chadwick, Steven Male, Tahlia Kingi, Zoe Deans, and Ruth Gregoriadis.

Reference Links
Lifehack -
Sovereign Wellbeing Index 2013 -
The Gluckman Report on youth suicide 2011 -
LifeStack beta - Library of Wellbeing Technology

Lifehack wants to see young people flourishing around Aotearoa New Zealand.

We enable Kiwis to get involved in creating digital tools to improve youth wellbeing. We help spark new projects, social ventures, and connect communities to put more energy behind what's already working.

Through collaborative events, mentoring, change-maker bootcamps and online resources, the Lifehack community creates tech and media to tackle complex social problems.

Aside from Labs, the Lifehack team has been running weekend events around the country in 2014 to support community projects which have a youth focus.

LIFEHACK is a program run by Enspiral Foundation - a social innovation collective founded in Aotearoa NZ.


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