The Entrepreneurship Hatchery  ☰ 
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Sonar

Benjamin Slater, Jane Guo

Value Proposition

The general Ontario health coverage does not include treatment of mild to moderate mental health illnesses such as depression and anxiety. As such, it is difficult, especially for youth, to access timely and affordable mental health resources.

Sonar aims to make counseling for youth aged 15 to 24 more affordable and accessible by offering a user-friendly customizable web-based tool to mental health practitioners, such as psychologists, psychotherapists, psychoanalysts and social workers in the private sector.  The web-based medium allows practitioners to facilitate their business through video and voice conferencing, private messaging and online payment options, while simultaneously cutting costs associated with an in-person practice. This technology will thus allow for youth to access quality mental health services through reasonable costs.

Benjamin Slater | Engineering Science

Benjamin Slater graduated with a BASc in Engineering Science, specializing in the biomedical option in 2013. Previously, he has worked in Professor Alison McGuigan’s lab to quantify collective cell migration data and has published a paper on his findings. In Fall 2013, he is beginning his MASc in chemical engineering in specializing in bioinformatics.

Jane Guo | Engineering Science

Jane Guo graduated with a BASc in Engineering Science (biomedical option) in 2013. She became interested in entrepreneurship after taking undergraduate-level courses offered by the Centre for Management of Technology and Entrepreneurship.

Journey with the Hatchery

Sonar team members Benjamin and Jane share a strong passion for improving mental health services and their accessibility to youth. Initially, they were interested in developing technology that would facilitate easier and affordable mental health services to youth through technologies such as mobile applications. However, they developed this idea further to create a versatile web-based tool with a variety of functions that is reduces overhead costs for private mental health practitioners, allowing for easier access by youth. Sonar won the 2013 Orozco Prize for the advances in their idea.