Designing and Building Interventions is one thing. Deploying the interventions to meet the scale of need in a refugee population is another. As noted in the Global Mental Health Report earlier, what L2T seeks to create a model to deliver mental health interventions … capable of delivery by paraprofessionals or peers, relatively brief, focused as much as possible on self-management, and able to address multiple problems at the same time.
After going through the Design & Build process, the intervention’s efficacy should be tested. By implementing a waitlist research design during recruitment, baseline mental wellness is provided to all participants. However, only half of the group receives the course of interventions initially while the other half is placed on a waitlist. New small groups start as the original groups complete a set of interventions. After the course is completed, each subsequent cohort of groups measure their sense of mental wellness and compared their scores to their original baseline scores. If tweaks are needed, this design helps to identify them.
MHWs can recruit individuals from the initial groups to serve as facilitators and help start new groups. This approach can multiply the number of groups, effectively start to scale a trauma recovery program rapidly. In time, if the MHWs nurture the diffusion of this innovative approach, a community-based mental health / trauma recovery healing community emerges.
L2T delivers its interventions (in multiple languages) through an app designed to run on a mobile device, typically a smart phone with internet access. Courses and interventions can then be downloaded and played offline.
In order to scale a response, L2T believes that the best results for trauma recovery is achieved through a small group of 5 to 8 persons sitting in a circle. Because mobile devices are now so ubiquitous globally, L2T designed an app linked to the interventions built with its Design & Build tools. L2T’s tools allow MHWs to create an audio file in a refugee population’s own language so this is primary format for delivering interventions. Then anyone, MHW or refugee can press “play” and start the audio file. In this way, all participants can participate in the intervention. The app also has a simple evaluation tool so that participants can enter their sense of well-being periodically. (See images below)
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1 Quote by UNHCR’s Senior Mental Health Officer Pieter Ventevogel; Q&A by Tim Gaynor