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VIDA PLENA

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STARTED: Incubation Program 2022

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Joy Bittner

Co-founder, Executive Director

SEED GRANT: $132,000

TEAM SIZE: 2

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Anita Kaslin

Co-founder, Community Group Coordinator

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Building Strong Mental Health in Latin America

CURRENT OR PREDICTED IMPACT:

  • Their goal is to effectively treat depression in 2,800 people in 2023 and 8,700 people in 2024.

COST-EFFECTIVENESS:

  • Estimated to be at least 8x more cost-effective than GiveDirectly in terms of improving subjective well-being

  • Cost per DALY: $462

  • Cost per WELLBY: $17

  • Projected cost per person treated: $77

SIGNIFICANT UPDATES: 

  • Signed a partnership with the Columbia University Global Mental Health Lab in NYC to:

    • a) Train supervisors and the first cohort of group facilitators

    • b) Give overall program supervision and support

    • c) Conduct and publish a feasibility study 

  • Signed agreements with 11 local implementation partners in Ecuador, demonstrating on-the-ground-support

  • Received official 501c3 US nonprofit status  

  • Signed research partnership with the Ecuadorian university, PUCE, to conduct an impact study in 2023

  • Joy was invited to present on their work at EAGx Latam in Mexico City, January 2023

  • Anita and Joy were selected to participate in the South Park Commons Social Innovators Fellowship, which is supported by the Agency Fund

ACHIEVEMENTS: 

  • Community training: 12 local community members certified by certified by Columbia University as group facilitators

  • Pilot completed: In the fall of 2022, Vida Plena completed a pilot program to test the implementation of the program model in Latin America

  • Inauguration of first 10 support groups: Groups are composed of an average of 7 people and meet in local neighborhood locations for 9 weeks

IMPORTANT PUBLICATIONS:

ROOM FOR MORE FUNDING IN 2023

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