Heyr is the mental health app rewarding users for checking-in

Heyr is the mental health app rewarding users for checking-in

Tell us about yourself and your startup

I am a director and co-founder alongside Kevin Kwong of a preventative mental health app that focuses on students and young adults.

Global mental health is a $2 trillion issue. In the UK, a young person is referred to the NHS for mental health support every 30 seconds.

Heyr is a mental wellbeing app that gets to know you through conversational texts and check-ins. Based on the principles of Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) techniques, the app tracks your patterns and suggests mood exercises to help you build confidence, address low mood, anxiety or everyday stresses.

Heyr aims to prevent young adult mental ill-health by addressing the problems around the lack of resources, long waiting times for support. Through our alliance with NHS England’s academic health science network, we aim to promote early intervention, improve accessibility and support clinicians to meet existing & new demand.

What led you to where you are today?

Both myself and Kevin share a passion for mental health given his background in digital health and my passion for creating impact. We’ve both had lived experience with anxiety and Kevin has previously worked in telemedicine supporting mental health. Through a mutual friend we were introduced and got talking about the future of prevention and how we could work together to create change. It was at this point, we began working together on a rebrand of a previous mental health app I was working on which eventually became Heyr.

What has been the biggest highlight of your Founder's journey so far?

My biggest achievement this far was meeting my now co-founder... naturally, we gelled and exchanged ideas on how to design a world where people come first. We have very different personalities, work styles and skill sets, which have proven to be a huge source of strength. I think you know that you have something special on your hands when you have an easy chemistry and you’re both willing to put in the commitment required for the long haul.

What lessons have you learnt that you would like to pass on?

Start small, be impact and value focused. Things don't happen over night so if you lead with passion and creativity it helps along the journey when things get rocky.

If you could invite anyone to join the Black Valley community, who and why?

A friend of ours (TJ Morgan) and partner collaborator is co-founder at Lifelong Audio that turns priceless life stories into an audio series and a separate podcast focused on entrepreneurship and wellbeing. There would be lots of synergy with what he is creating and the support that could be offered from Black Valley. Equally, we would strongly encourage any diverse early stage startup that wants to scale alongside a talented and well connected community to apply.

Final thoughts?

It’s a real pleasure for us to be part of the Black Valley community and we look forward to this journey along with other from our cohort.

Lee McPherson

Co-Founder of Heyr App