19 Nov 2018

Pacific mental health app saves 8 lives from suicide

3:48 pm on 19 November 2018

Creators of a mental health app specifically designed to target Pacific youth say it has saved eight lives from potentially ending in suicide this year.

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The free 'Aunty Dee' online interactive tool attracted thousands of users from all across New Zealand, with almost half of them being European.

The App was launched by Pasifika organisation Le Va in 2016 and was last year awarded Auckland University of Technology's E-health innovation award.

Le Va's CEO Monique Faleafa said the app was designed to help young people solve problems and is the first of its kind.

"We found over 70 people in the last year had entered in suicidal thoughts or behaviours, and out of that 70, it was about 28 had wanted to talk to a counsellor. And of that 28, eight people needed suicidal support on the spot."