CHILEAN ALUMNI TEAM WINS INTERNATIONAL AEIF COMPETITION WITH PROJECT AIMED AT HIGH RISK YOUTH
Out of more than 800 proposals submitted to this year´s Alumni Engagement Innovation Fund competition, (AEIF), hosted by the U.S. State Department, 61 winning teams from 51 countries were selected to carry-out innovative projects of global significance. Under the category of Human Rights and Social Inclusion of Vulnerable Population, the team from Chile won with the “LGBT Youth, Let´s Talk” project aimed at high risk groups of suicidal youth. Juan Pablo Fuente Alba, Project owner, together with other two members from Chile, Jaime Parada and Lionel Brossi and Esteban Paulon from Argentina will receive up to $25.000 to initiate and support the project´s development.
In their presentation the group stated that Chile rates as having the second highest suicidal rate in the world and children´s mortality between 10-19 years old being by suicides as the second reason in the country. The two main goals of the project, which is an extension of an ongoing effort of Todo Mejora Foundation, are to prevent LGBT youth suicide, homo and transphobic bullying and self-harm mainly due to depression and high anxiety rates because of family absence, no school support, school rejection and invisibilization.
It offers educational and life saving resources which includes an alliance with other youth directed platforms and a virtual support system through Facebook messaging and SOS/only emergency text messages from Let´s Talk; social monitoring/child participation platform from U-Report, UNICEF that include the opinions and recommendations to improve program and policies that affect youth and an extension from 5 to 45 hours of weekly immediate response online program, called “Safe Hour” with 12 new psychologists added to the response team.
In time this project considers implementing together with the National Health Department and Mental Health Public programs a first online support system that will work under de Specialized Law which Guarantees Rights to Children and that will be used regularly in the public health system.
More info about the project in: https://alumni.state.gov/node/19835