Share this project

Done

Share this project

Done
The Objective Zero App seeks to eliminate veteran and military suicides by instantly connecting those in crisis to a support community.
235 backers pledged $38,000 to help bring this project to life.

About

Objective Zero App - Fighting Veteran, Military Suicide project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound

$38,000

235

What is a prototype?

A prototype is a preliminary model of something. Projects that offer physical products need to show backers documentation of a working prototype. This gallery features photos, videos, and other visual documentation that will give backers a sense of what’s been accomplished so far and what’s left to do. Though the development process can vary for each project, these are the stages we typically see:

Proof of Concept

Explorations that test ideas and functionality.

Functional Prototype

Demonstrates the functionality of the final product, but looks different.

Appearance Prototype

Looks like the final product, but is not functional.

Design Prototype

Appearance and function match the final product, but is made with different manufacturing methods.

Production Prototype

Appearance, function, and manufacturing methods match the final product.

20271b13537f70d1fcc2bbec3c6860c1 h264 high.jpg?ixlib=rb 2.0

Prototype Gallery

These photos and videos provide a detailed look at this project’s development.

The Problem: Veteran, Military Suicide Crisis
The Problem: Veteran, Military Suicide Crisis
The Solution: Objective Zero App
The Solution: Objective Zero App
Filling Critical Gaps in the Mental Health App Space
Filling Critical Gaps in the Mental Health App Space
Timeline
Timeline
How We Will Spend Your Money
How We Will Spend Your Money

How does it work?

If you haven't checked out the prototype video above, do so now, as it likely will answer most of your questions. However, if you're less of a visual learner, the app works like this:

  • Download. Download the app on Android or iOS devices. Users can also access the Objective Zero network from their desktop/laptop computer or from an analog phone (though analog phones do not allow for video or text chats).
  • Create a profile. Upload a profile photo, certify your Veteran or military status (using a .mil email address or other documentation), identify the types of ambassadors with whom you'd like to connect (e.g., those sharing the same branch of service or combat experience), and more.
  • Connect. In the home screen, tap text, video, or voice icons to connect to the Objective Zero ambassador network. 
  • Create favorites. Save your favorite ambassadors for future phone calls.
  • Support groups. Join chat groups focused on PTSD, depression, anxiety, Veterans of Operation Iraqi Freedom, and more.
  • Training. Access tools (such as guided meditation, workout routines, etc.) proven to assist with PTSD, depression, anxiety, TBI, panic disorder, and more. 
  • Emergency. Connect to 911 or the VA's crisis line from within the app.
  • Resources. Browse information and resources about long-term care options for PTSD, depression, anxiety, TBI, and panic disorder. 
  • More. Receive buddy checks from Objective Zero ambassadors and inspiration and helpful reminders via push notifications; log your progress in your dashboard.

Risks and challenges

Building an app that connects Veterans and service members in a time of crisis comes with many rewards. However, given the sensitivity of the issue, it also comes with some risks. We've worked with our legal counsel, design and development team, and professionals in the mental health field to address these challenges head-on. In the spirit of transparency, and to show you our attention to detail, we've outlined a few major challenges and what we've done, or plan to do, to overcome them.

Anonymity

Veterans and current service members often don't seek treatment or help for PTSD, depression, anxiety, panic disorder, or suicidal ideations because they fear doing so will harm their career and reputation. And, unfortunately, it often does.

Recognizing this, users can remain anonymous in the Objective Zero community if they choose to do so. We can do this using an application program interface (API) from Twilio to mask (hide) numbers and other contact information.

Medical Licensure Across State Lines

Some of Objective Zero's ambassadors are licensed health professionals from across the country. However, most licenses only qualify the holder to practice in the state in which they are licensed (or in states with reciprocity agreements). This could become a sticky situation if, say, an ambassador who is only licensed in California receives an invitation to connect to a user in New York City, where he or she is not licensed.

Following consultation with our legal counsel, we designed the Objective Zero platform to only connect licensed practitioners to users in the state(s) in which they are licensed to practice. Looking to the future, we are working with our general counsel to lobby for a licensure exemption for Veterans and current military service members. Because there isn't a lot of case law on the topic, we are on the cutting edge of pushing for greater access to virtual care across state boundaries.

Reliability

We often get asked what happens if a user's call, text, or video chat is left unanswered. Is it like Uber, where you're left out on the street (literally) if no one answer the call? Recognizing this risk, especially in the first several months when demand may exceed the organic Objective Zero Ambassador Network, we've done two things.

First, we've established strategic partnerships with other nonprofits with extensive volunteer networks committed to the same mission as us: eliminating veteran and military suicides. We're tapping into these organizations' already established networks to boost the number of ambassadors. Secondly, we built a feature into the app that automatically connects the user to the VA's suicide crisis hotline if an ambassador doesn't answer the call.

User Acquisition

One of the most significant challenges we face is getting people to download the app when they aren't in a moment of crisis, so that they have access to it when they are in crisis mode.

We plan to overcome this hurdle by incorporating features that are attractive to all veterans and current service members, not just those under mental stress. By signing up for Objective Zero, users get free or discounted access to popular mediation and workout apps and websites, as well as discounts for other activities.

Users can also join groups based on unit affiliation, campaign, military occupational specialty, and more to connect to those with whom they served. Lastly, we're in contact with VA and Department of Defense officials and other health care administrators to incorporate Objective Zero into patients' ongoing care plans.

Cross-Platform and Device Functionality

Unfortunately, many veterans who need help the most don't have access to a smartphone or a computer. Even worse, many live in rural communities with poor or no cellular service or digital networks. So, how do we connect to these veterans?

Recognizing the user experience will be completely different on an analog phone or a digital non-smartphone, we've created a 1-800 number that connects to our ambassador network. I know what you're thinking, isn't this the same as the VA suicide crisis hotline? The answer is no. Through our platform, ambassadors can conduct 'buddy checks' on users without smartphones, adding the community component traditional call centers lack.

Additionally, we're working on a technology that will let users on an analog phone select their Ambassador preferences (branch of service, campaign, MOS, etc.) by dialing numbers (e.g., press 1 if you wish to connect with an 11B (Infantry) MOS ambassador).

Lastly, we're in contact with a major cell network provider to get second-hand and donated smartphones into the hands of more veterans, so that they can get full access to Objective Zero.

Data Security

Given the sensitivity of Objective Zero's purpose and the data it collects, security is a big concern. Users need to feel confident that their information will not be compromised, and so do we. After all, medically-sensitive data, though informally collected on a mobile app, may fall under the purview of HIPPA regulations. If Objective Zero were found to have leaked this information, we would be in hot water.

After conferring with our general legal counsel and database engineers, we took several steps to protect our user data. The first is we created a comprehensive privacy disclosure, notifying users of their rights. Second we’re using databases and servers that exceed all federal and industry data security standards for medical databases.

Potential Delays

If you've ever created a mobile app, you know that it can be difficult to deliver on-time and on-budget. After analyzing our development timeline, we see two major friction points at which there could be delays.

The first potential delay could occur during the beta phase, in March 2017. While we will be following LEAN and AGILE product development methodologies, and thus testing during the entire development process, the app will undergo a rigorous beta test where you, or those of you who pledge at designated levels, will have a chance to use the app and try to break it before we release it to the broader public. If we find any major problems with the code or platform at this time, it could delay the launch date by one to two weeks, depending on the extent of the fix.

The second is getting the app approved in the Apple App Store. If you're a developer, you know getting an app approved in the App store comes with its own set of challenges and tends to be more difficult than the Google Play Store on Android. So, while the average approval time for the Apple App Store is six days, it could be longer (up to about two weeks).

Throughout the development process, we plan to send regular email updates to those who pledged, highlighting key milestones and any potential delays.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 10 or more About US$ 10

    1-Star Supporter

    Pledge $10 and your name will be placed on our website, under a heading titled, '1-Star Supporters.'

    Includes:
    • Call-Out on our Website
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    11 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 20 or more About US$ 20

    1-Star (Promotable) Supporter

    Pledge $20 and your name will be placed on our website, under a heading titled, '1-Star Supporters.' You will also receive an Objective Zero custom military challenge coin! (Coins ship only to the US). Note - Kickstarter does not allow us to update rewards already selected, so anyone who contributes at a higher reward level ($25, $100, $500, etc.) will also receive this reward, and this reward will also be retroactively given to anyone who has donated $20 or more.

    Includes:
    • Call-Out on our Website
    • OZ Challenge Coin
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    Limited 30 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 25 or more About US$ 25

    2-Star Supporter

    Pledge $25 and your name will be placed on our website, under a heading titled '2-Star Supporters.' You will also get access to the Objective Zero app before it goes live in the app store!

    Includes:
    • Call-Out on our Website
    • Beta Version of the App Before it Hits the App Store
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    51 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 40 or more About US$ 40

    Dysfunctional Veterans OZ Supporter

    This is a standalone reward and is not offered as a bundle with other rewards. By selecting this reward and pledging $40, you will receive a Tri-Blend T-shirt custom designed by the Dysfunctional Veterans & Objective Zero teams! Two notes: first, there is a "backer limit" of 50 shirts only. Second, this only ships to the US!

    Includes:
    • Tri-Blend DV/OZ T-Shirt
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    Limited 25 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 100 or more About US$ 100

    3-Star Supporter

    In addition to getting early access to the Objective Zero app, you'll get your name listed on our website under a heading titled, '3-Star Supporters.' You'll also get a personal thank you card from a Veteran who overcame his struggle with suicide.

    Includes:
    • Call-Out on our Website
    • Beta Version of the App Before it Hits the App Store
    • Thank You Card from a Survivor
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 56 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 500 or more About US$ 500

    4-Star Supporter

    Pledge $500 and receive all of the above, plus your name on our website under a heading titled, "4-Star Supporters.' You'll also be featured in an Objective Zero podcast.

    Includes:
    • Beta Version of the App Before it Hits the App Store
    • Call-Out on our Website
    • Thank You Card from a Survivor
    • Featured on an Objective Zero Podcast
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 14 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 2,500 or more About US$ 2,500

    5-Star Supporter

    Pledge $2,500 or more and receive all of the above, plus your name will be posted on our website in huge 36-point font under a massive heading titled,' 5-Star Supporters.' You'll also get an inside look at the development of the app as an honorary Objective Zero team member. Who knows, your creativity may make Objective Zero even better, saving more Veteran and military lives--a win-win!

    Includes:
    • Beta Version of the App Before it Hits the App Store
    • Call-Out on our Website
    • Featured on an Objective Zero Podcast
    • Thank You Card from a Survivor
    • Honorary Member of the Objective Zero Dev. Team
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 4 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (30 days)