Edmonton Police Foundation


Mental Health and Wellness App for First Responders

We're seeking feedback and guidance on what we should include as outcomes and requirements for our upcoming paid challenge. Think Big!

This challenge is closed

Edmonton Police Service branded clothing

This challenge is closed



Problem Statement

We want to deliver a comprehensive solution, made available to first responders (e.g. police, emergency medical services, firefighters, military, etc.) that supports employees physically and mentally throughout their careers (and perhaps into retirement). This solution should address the following statements: 

  • Recruit Engagement: Using physical fitness as a common thread, allow recruiters to connect, mentor, and answer questions about first responder requirements for entry and career path. Facilitate recruiters in the management of potential recruits within the first responder industries. 
  • Employee Physical Wellness: Using employee fitness as a foundation, allow employees in the emergency response industry to setup their wellness goals and objectives, and then track to see progress, add reminders, etc. It should also allow wellness staff within those services to engage with employees and assist when necessary. 
  • Employee Mental Wellness: Because mental well-being requires a specific set of resources, develop a comprehensive list available to first responders to use when they feel they need help. In this area, we are open to additional functions that may allow first responders to get help as quickly as possible. For example, a function that checks on a first responder daily and asks them questions to ultimately guide them to the right resource.

Ideally, all three functions should be incorporated into one solution that will serve the emergency response community.

Our ask of you for this challenge: 

  1. On the above, think of what else should we be considering?
  2. What are the best practices you've seen, etc.
  3. What outcomes should we be seeking
  4. Are there existing solutions we should be looking at
  5. In an ideal world, what does the optimal solution look like (e.g. For #3, an app that checks in on a first responder daily and asks them questions, which ultimately guides them to the right resource, if needed)
  6. Are there existing commercial solution(s) that fulfill these needs

Pain Points

Recruit Engagement

Recruiters in every emergency response industry must find the best recruits possible for a challenging career. Potential applicants come from all walks of life with commitments that may not allow them to connect with recruiters during regularly scheduled events. While a website may give them the basic information, they may require specialized answers or mentoring, and often want to hear directly from a first responder for questions like:

  • What level of physical fitness is required? 
  • How can I prepare better for training?
  • What a day in the life might be like?
  • What to expect in recruit training?
  • How will a career in first response affect my family?

Employee Physical Wellness

Employees within the first responder industry want better ways to track their fitness and wellness goals. Emergency response is a demanding career and often the physical well-being of employees is directly connected to their success in the job. As such, services often have specific staff dedicated to ensuring both physical and mental wellness. With competing requirements for resources, this staff cannot reach everyone personally but using technology may be more successful in providing services to employees from wellness staff. 

Employee Mental Wellness

We know mental wellness is directly connected to physical wellness. That said, working within the emergency response industry can expose first responders to many challenging situations that take its toll on their mental well-being. When facing these challenges, employees want ways to be able to reach out to the right professionals in an expedited manner regardless of time of day or day of the week. They need resources and information in a discreet and safe/anonymous manner, 24-7. 


What's in it for you?

This is the preamble to the real challenge which will have a monetary prize. However, the BEST submissions from this challenge will receive Edmonton Police Service (EPS) branded merchandise (e.g. coffee mugs, hoodies, hats, etc.). This is the cool stuff that you can't get unless you are an EPS member (or family).


Next Steps

After we better understand what we need to ask for, we will launch the formal challenge where we will ask for proposed solutions and that challenge will have a substantial prize money component, along with an opportunity to get your first paying customer and opportunities to commercialize the solution(s) globally. 


As this concept was came to fruition, there were several design criteria developed but we did not want to limit ourselves. As the challenge outlines, we want to THINK BIG. We need to encourage new perspectives and new ideas to be generated to address these problems. 

When looking at solving the challenges outlined in the overview, we need guidance of the following questions: 

  • What should we think and ask about, in our challenge relating to this application?
  • What outcomes should we be seeking on the three key points (recruiting, physical wellness, mental wellness)?
  • What challenges or risks should we anticipate?
  • Are there any commercial solutions out there already that we should consider?
  • How would you define success (i.e. what should we measure / judge on)?
  • If we were to think BIG, what should we strive for

Challenge Updates

New Challenge Launched - Building the App (or deploying an existing app)

Sept. 2, 2020, 9:26 a.m. PDT by Edmonton Police Foundation

Please see the Part 2 of this challenge whereby we are seeking either a new development or rolling out an existing app that meets the needs.

Judging Complete - Winners Announced

May 28, 2020, 1:05 p.m. PDT by Edmonton Police Foundation

Thank you to all those who reviewed and submitted their respective applications. The deliberations were challenging with so many incredible ideas and suggestions. The judges had a hard time picking the top three.


We are happy to congratulate the following:

In 3rd place was team Resilience on measuring prospective recruits for resiliency factors an excellent suggestion.

In 2nd place we both felt the LVS AI submission had promise specifically as it pertains to 24/7 access to mental wellness supports.

In 1st place we agreed that SarA Health was the most robust submission that answered the challenge for overall health and wellbeing.


We will be in touch with the top three to award their prizes to them.


Stay tuned for the next challenge which will define what we're seeking and look for the ideal solution(s) to help our first responders and others with this important aspect.


Best wishes

Edmonton Police Foundation

Submission Deadline Extended due to COVID-19

March 23, 2020, 7:48 p.m. PDT by Edmonton Police Foundation

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the committee has extended the deadline to submit and the new end date is Apr 30, 2020. All subsequent events (e.g. judging, etc.) have as such been appropriately extended. Please see the new timelines (on the timelines tab).

We hope all of you are staying safe and well and following the guidance from the health professionals, who are putting their lives at risk, so we can all be safe and well.

We will get through this together.

Best Wishes

Edmonton Police Foundation

1st place
2nd place
3rd place
Team Resilience Team Resilience
1 team member
Looking for members
1 team member
Looking for members
SaRA Health SaRA Health
1 team member
Looking for members
Estyn Edwards's team Estyn Edwards's team
1 team member
Looking for members