In the last years there has been a surge in eHealth applications. Such applications are digital tools aiming to improve physical or mental health by providing information and/or access to medical or mental health professionals.
Within euPrevent PROFILE, we compiled an overview of eHealth applications mainly aiming to promote social connections and, in turn, may combat loneliness and social isolation, excluding social media apps. Included apps may work on individual as well as community levels and focus on either older people, teenagers/young adults, or both.
This overview shows apps/websites developed in countries of the Euregion Meuse-Rhine (BE, NL, DE). Please note that this overview is meant as inspiration and is not exhaustive.
The app ‘Hoplr’ (pronounced as “Hopler”) is a Belgian initiative founded in 2014, aiming at community building by connecting people with their environment and therewith improving social interaction and access to social capital. The app offers a closed network, meaning the app is only accessible for people from the neighborhood. People who use this app can post messages with questions or need for help with something or inviting people for social events (among many other applications). These messages are then only visible for people from the network/neighborhood.
Klup is an app developed in the Netherlands with the aim to improve social connection and interaction and build new social networks. The app, targeting at people 50 years and older, is based on a subscription (see website). With the app people can organize events, or also participate in events and activities. Every week hundreds of activities are organized throughout the Netherlands. For example, going to a concert or museum together or sporting together. The possibilities are too many to mention. Please visit the website for more information.
Nebenan (German for “next door”) is an online network for promoting connection and exchange between people of the same neighborhood. Members can ask for or offer support for their neighbors in any way possible (e.g., doing groceries, finding a babysitter or lending tools) and help out in their neighborhood. This way, it also offers a low-level opportunity for getting to know new people living in your area and establish new contacts or even friendships. Please visit the website for more information.
Therapieland is a website with several eHealth programs, including a self-help program on loneliness. This program comprises several elements such as information about loneliness, reflective assignments, but also tips on how to reduce feelings of loneliness. The program is not free; however, the first steps are. In case this program fits the needs and wishes one needs to pay a subscription to access the full program.