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Aamica: Crowd Sourcing Compassion

Aamica crowd sources compassion and shares it in a tangible and lasting way with essential workers.

Photo of Risa Stein
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Aamica employs an app associated with an NFC chip-embedded wearable to create compassionate connections. The recipient of the wearable ('aamilet'), aware that no reply is possible through the app, is free to relish the compassionate connection without feeling compelled to respond. This approach also alleviates anxiety the sender sharing warm sentiments might otherwise experience through more interactive means. Moreover, rather than try to promote a positive and warm connotation for cell phones, Aamica created the wearable aamilet as a lasting and tangible reminder of the interpersonal connection. We have recently pivoted to enable broader implementation and distribution of a less expensive NFC chip-embedded silicone bracelet in order to recognize and appreciate COVID-19 heroes. 

Our team is headquartered in Sydney, Australia with a US office in Kansas City, Missouri.

What is the need are you focusing on?

We ought to be able to share our gratitude for COVID-19 essential workers in a manner commensurate with the value of their service. Given the challenges they've faced in executing their duties, they deserve a lasting, meaningful, and tangible reminder of our deep appreciation. Currently, there are no means of providing such support on a grand scale. At Aamica, we realize their rates of suicide and depression are great and we feel a calling to ensure that our appreciation of their selfless work has as great a positive impact on them as their service has had on us.

Through the Aamica app, employees/members of an organization can share multimedia messages of appreciation. Aamica bundles the messages, stores them on an NFC chip embedded in a wearable (‘aamilet’), then distributes them to COVID-19 heroes. The aamilet recipient downloads the free app, taps their phone to the aamilet, and the messages appear for them to relish forever.

Which type of submission are you sharing?

  • Sharing a pivot idea your organization is considering or could consider

Describe the business pivot or adaptation in 3-4 sentences.

Aamica has pivoted from prioritizing a 'low-community/high-intimacy' model where a family member or friend provides a high-quality aamilet to a loved one to the 'high-community/low-intimacy' model where compassionate connections are created on a broader-scale involving organizations and their employees/members in providing support to COVID-19 essential workers. This pivot allows Aamica to provide a widespread, inexpensive, meaningful, and tangible means of demonstrating community-level appreciation to COVID-19 essential workers. Our Theory of Change model clearly outlines the means through which community norms surrounding the provision of comfort and support to others will shift as a result of the broader applications of the Aamica product lines.

Do you plan to implement this solution?

  • Yes

Describe the impact that this solution will create in the world.

*Reverse the current help-seeking paradigm from one in which the hurting are required to ask for recognition and support to one in which community, providers, and friends and family preemptively provide comfort and care. *Develop a strategy of 'trickle-down' compassion beginning with an easily accepted behavior and introducing slight modifications toward the goal. *Improved relationships, unity, community ties. *Improved mental and physical well-being. *Decreased isolation, substance abuse, deaths of despair. *Decreased awkwardness surrounding the provision of compassion. With the pivot to addressing the needs of COVID-19 essential workers, we have the potential to impact 100's of millions of individuals. We aim to launch by mid-June. This program will remain an option to recognize and support relief workers during all future man-made and natural disasters. PLEASE SEE OUR THEORY OF CHANGE MODEL

What is the name of your business or organization?

Aamica

What does your business/company do? Whose needs does your business/company address? Who do you serve?

https://aamica.org/ *PIVOT PRIORITY: Organizations can pay tribute to COVID-19 essential workers with aamilets preloaded with employee/member messages of gratitude The organizations will benefit from the social value, the individuals will benefit from being able to express their appreciation, and most of all, the essential workers will benefit from having a lasting reminder of the many individuals who so deeply appreciate the selfless work they engaged in during the pandemic. This pivot allows Aamica to provide a widespread, inexpensive, meaningful, and tangible means of demonstrating community support to COVID-19 essential workers.

What is your profession?

Currently, I am employed as a professor of psychology and CEO of Aamica USA

Where are you located (country)?

United States, but HQ is in Sydney, Australia.

Where are you located (region)?

  • North America

What industry is your business/company in?

  • Athletics/Fitness/Wellness
  • Entrepreneur/Investor
  • mental health and well-being

How many people does your business/company employ?

  • 0-10

How old is your business/company?

  • 2-5 years old

Which classification describes your organization/business?

  • Business

What kind of stakeholders and partnerships are needed to pursue this solution?

  • Funding- Grants
  • Funding- Investment
  • Stakeholders/Partnerships- Private Sector
  • Stakeholders/Partnerships- Grassroots/Community Groups

Do you need help building partnerships and finding partners?

  • Yes

If Yes to the above, please share 1-2 sentences describing the specific help you desire.

We would like partners interested in assisting with procurement and distribution of aamilets as well as marketing. We also request aid in identifying and signing organizations interested in providing their employees/members this inexpensive opportunity to create, share, and deliver community support for COVID-19 heroes.

What do you think are the main barriers to implementing this solution?

*Financial investments for purchase of aamilets and marketing support. *As we grow we will need to hire personnel in sales, customer service, finance, and supply chain and distribution. *We will eventually outgrow our current ability to store messages of support and will need to address cloud storage requirements. *As the programs diversify, we will encounter legal and institutional barriers such as HIPAA and FERPA. *Establishing partnerships with a variety of organizations and channel partners. *Identifying individuals to serve on our Board and who will engage in ways that increase the visibility and viability of Aamica. *As a novice entrepreneur, I need willing and knowledgeable mentors to advise and guide me.

If you are currently working on a pivot, what have you learned so far?

Start two months earlier! We are fortunate to have design-thinkers on our team who possess the cognitive flexibility and agility to recognize pain points and to create new approaches on the backbone of the organizational mission and infrastructure when opportunities arises to address community needs and promote greater social good. Still, COVID-19 hit while we were in the late stages of launching. Nevertheless, we knew pivoting was consistent with our mission to create compassionate connections. There are always supply chain challenges. But we didn't initially recognize the extent to which pandemic-related business shut-downs would complicate our momentum. Although we hope for a speedy end to the pandemic, a high demand for essential workers will continue for this and all future natural and man-made crises. With this demand comes personal struggles and sacrifices that warrant the provision of a tangible and lasting reminder of the community's support.

Are you aware of any open source efforts, hackathons or other collaborative efforts related to your solution? Are you participating in these efforts?

We are actively seeking opportunities to partner with others addressing the mental health challenges presented by COVID-19. Whenever possible, we are attempting to collaborate and submit proposals to efforts aimed at work through pandemic related interpersonal complications.

Website URL

https://aamica.org/
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Attachments (3)

Aamica sales deck.pdf

Aamica COVID-19 essential worker sales pitch deck

RevenueModel (1).pdf

Aamica COVID-19 essential worker Thank You program revenue generation model

Business model canvas.jpeg

Aamica COVID-19 essential worker Thank You program business model canvas

8 comments

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Spam
Photo of N J
Team

Very informative and useful in this current situation. Thank you for sharing.

Spam
Photo of Risa Stein
Team

Thank you, NJ. If there are any question you may still have, please let me know.

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