Innovation summary

The decline in emotional well-being is one of the worst problems our society is facing today and is leading to a global epidemic. As per the WHO, depression is now the leading cause of mental and physical disability. TrustCircle is a mental health care startup that utilizes mobile & AI technology to improve emotional resiliency & well-being for all.

TrustCircle is unique in the fact that it empowers all individuals to assess, track, and learn about their emotional well-being, gain access to on-demand care, and community support anytime, anywhere - anonymously.  TrustCircle even touches the lives of those who are illiterate and below the poverty line by empowering Community Health Workers with simple, secure, multilingual, and scalable solutions. Organizations, cities, counties, and states can leverage TrustCircle's data-driven model to identify high-risk population segments/areas and take proactive action to promote health & well-being within their community.

Impact summary

TrustCircle has been empowering individuals and organizations for emotional resilience and well-being through their prevention and early identification approach for stress, burnout, depression, anxiety, and psychosis and achieved the following impact:​

  1. ​​​TrustCircle has approximately 50,000 users across India
  2. Approximately 12,000 users have used the app to self-screen
  3. 6 schools and colleges in Chennai, India were engaged through TrustCircle, reaching a total of 30,000 students (ages 15 – 24 years) enrolled on the app
  4. The TrustCircle app also has 5000 global users from 22 countries

“TrustCircle mHealth solutions contribute significantly to providing a creative solution to the crisis in mental health and strengthens the recovery journey.” 

Ingrid Daniels 
President Elect - World Federation for Mental Health

Innovation details

One of the most effective ways to bridge the gap of the ever-increasing demand for emotional well-being is to empower every individual to take charge of their own wellbeing, this is exactly what TrustCircle does. TrustCircle is currently serving everyone age 15 and above by building a preventive model that gives individuals access to assess, track, reflect, and improve their emotional wellbeing free for life.

TrustCircle catalyzes capacity building and task shifting by training its partner network who in turn empower their community members and help create awareness, understand risks, take proactive action, and prioritize emotional well-being in their communities. TrustCircle partners include corporations, universities, schools, hospitals, community organizations, and governments.

In addition, TrustCircle has also built a global well-being advisory council with global leaders who are the guiding light and helping scale TrustCircle impact globally.

TrustCircle mHealth Solutions are based on The 3P Model (Preventative – Participatory – Predictive) and the different components are mentioned below1-5

  • mHealth Smiles  - A research-backed platform that helps you understand your emotions better to improve your well-being.
  • mHealth Tests  - Free validated mental health assessment tests for life, preventative & early intervention public health model, empower all individuals to assess, track, learn about their mental health proactively.
  • mHealth Connect – Builds an inclusive society and collaboration model of carefree community support for life, anonymous peer-peer support locally or globally.
  • mHealth Insights  - Organizations will gain access to real-time mental health insights for its community, identify high-risk areas/population and take action.
  • mHealth Care  – An on-demand care network of trustworthy experts for individuals and enterprises.

Key drivers

  • TrustCircle's mHealth solutions are replicable globally and the team has worked with global well-being experts from America, Africa, Asia, and Europe to design the approach and algorithms
  • The design is user-centric and the solutions are fully secure, anonymous, scalable, and multi-lingual
  • The mHealth tools are built within an inclusive approach for parents, family members, caregivers, survivors, providers, influencers, social and community health workers across different socio-economic groups
  • The solution can be easily used for capacity building in schools, college, universities, hospitals, Community Care Clinics, and even Primary Healthcare Clinics across all urban or rural areas
  • Provided free and scalable solutions for beneficiaries, paid by enterprises
  • Built a collaborative model - Partner with local, state, and national governments, corporations, universities, community organizations to accelerate impact at scale


  • Securing impact capital to serve the growing demand has been experienced as a challenge. TrustCircle is always looking to collaborate with strategic funders, partners and influencers who are committed to changing the status quo of global mental health care



TrustCircle is constantly seeking and forming strategic partnerships with stakeholders who can help facilitate their aim to scale impact and extend the reach of their program to a wider range of beneficiaries:

  • In 2017, TrustCircle and SCARF India – The World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Mental Health Research – formed a strategic partnership to empower 30000 youth and adolescents across schools and colleges in Chennai, India
  • In 2017, TrustCircle and Dr. Reddy Foundation formed strategic partnership to empower 50000 underprivileged youth across India
  • In 2017, TrustCircle established a collaboration to work with Partnerships For Change on scaling the TrustCircle program to promote mental health and well-being in India and Africa
  • In 2018, TrustCircle and TATA TRUSTS Cancer Program have signed an LOI to deploy the mHealth solution across 150-200 cancer centres across India

Making TrustCircle Truly Inclusive

  • We target to empower 5 million individuals by 2023 in a sustainable and scalable manner and bring the systemic level changes in the global mental health field by creating awareness, eradicating stigma, and empowering Individuals, organizations and governments to prioritize emotional well-being / mental health utilizing the data-driven model
  • TrustCircle believes strongly in ‘leaving no one behind’ and most recently, also included the development of voiceover technology in their mHealth apps to improve the accessibility of this technology to those with disabilities

Evaluation methods

TrustCircle mHealth solutions are all based on existing research and clinically validated standard assessments used globally such as the 9 Item Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ9) for Depression, the 7 Item Generalized Anxiety Disorder Assessment (GAD7) for Anxiety and the Percieved Stress Scale (PSS) for Stress. 

Cost of implementation

  • TrustCircle is free to use for service users, caregivers and healthcare providers
  • The TrustCircle team has spent 3 years building a scalable, secure, multi-lingual, and geographically agnostic mHealth solution that is free of cost for individuals and organizations. The only paid components of the mHealth app are for TrustCircle Insights and Analytics
  • The cost of implementing TrustCircle is based on the volume of users and organizations on the platform. Currently, the average cost of funding one user on the TrustCircle app is $16 per year

Impact details

  1. Reached their target in providing for early detection of psychosis, depression & anxiety through the app for 30,000 youth & young adults in schools & colleges in Chennai, India: 
    • An analysis of self-reported screening identified early risk psychosis symptoms in 4.91% of the students in school settings
    • The data-driven approach encouraged individuals to proactively seek early interventions
    • Approximately 10% of early intervention approaches have been identified through the app
  1. Providing free mHealth solutions and helping improve the mental health & well-being of 50,000+ individuals across all India as well as globally (over 5000 users across 22 countries):
    • An analysis of self-reported screening in the community identified an average range of 3.41-29.16% for depression and 7.25-28.16% for anxiety
    • Through providing access to key data, TrustCircle equips individuals with information regarding their mental health for improved help-seeking
    • These community-driven prevalence rates are also accessible to the public section in order to help influence action at the policy level


  1. TrustCircle mHealth Smiles [Link]
  2. TrustCircle mHealth Tests [Link]
  3. TrustCircle mHealth Connect [Link]
  4. TrustCircle mHealth Insights [Link]
  5. TrustCircle mHealth Care [Link]
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Twenty years ago, founder's brilliant brother was diagnosed with Schizophrenia, and quickly ostracized by community in India. To date his family is looking for solutions to two core problems: access to trustworthy community support and access to scarce mental healthcare providers. As per the World Health Organization more than 450 million people suffer from a mental or behavioral disorder, facing stigma and are served by only 200,000 Psychiatrists globally . Mental Healthcare is in a state of CRISIS and the world needs an alternative solution now. TrustCircle is the alternative solution that solves both these problems.

Psychiatric Disability Organisation is a small community based organization based in central part of Kenya. We work with people with mental illness and psychosocial disabilities. One of the biggest challenges we have faced is that people with these problems lack the courage to come out in the open and seek help due to the stigma associated with mental health problems in Kenya. We have been thinking of better and faster ways to reach people particularly those who could be suicidal, in order to enable them get help before it is too late. Technology is one of the biggest tools for removing the barrier as people do not have to fear stigma or discrimination if they access these services through their phone or computer. This very innovative App sound like the magic bullet we have been looking for. No need to reinvent the wheel. How can you help us get this technology and learn how to use it? We appreciate your response and any help given. Thanks, Mwenja

TrustCircle looks like a really good solution

How do you fund the project, particularly the fee for the 15 professionals?

Dear Hung - just saw your message, let's discuss this can you share your contact number, my email is Best, Sachin

Thanks Grace, you can help spread the word and in case you have any questions will be glad to answer those - I can be reached out at
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