Bicarakan.id and Its Mission to Improve Mental Health in Indonesia
Technology has a significant role in connecting people in different parts of the world. Their presence is also used by them to develop a variety of digital services whose functions are now increasingly broad, ranging from financial services, shopping, education, to mental health.
The Founder & CEO of Bicarakan.id Andreas Handani believes that everyone has the right to have good mental health. Even for modern people who have sufficient needs for clothing, food, and shelter, it is possible that their mental health needs have been met.
Based on data from the Basic Health Research (Riskesdas) in 2018, 12 million Indonesians aged over 15 years experienced depression, and 19 million people over 15 years experienced mental and emotional disorders.
This number has the potential to increase, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic, when people’s space for movement is limited. On a global scale, the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2017 reported that more than 200 million people (3.6% of the population) suffer from anxiety.
Meanwhile, the number of people with depression reached 322 million people (4.4% of the population), almost half of whom came from Southeast Asia and the Western Pacific.
Encouraging Mental Health with Counseling Services
When he founded Kontakkan.id, Andreas said that the initial idea for this service was born from a song lyric that alludes to the importance of expressing the problems faced.
Psychologically, he considers that expressing the problem is very useful to find the solution steps. In addition, he sees that services to accommodate mental health needs have not been well developed in Indonesia.
Andreas admits that he has no educational background and a career as a psychologist. Even before this, he had a career as a freelance copywriter and marketing consultant at a fintech startup.
Even so, Andreas admitted that psychology helped his life in making changes and inspired him to develop an online counseling platform.
For your information, Bicarakan.id is a platform that provides online counseling services. Its mission is to become an ecosystem of quality mental health services at an affordable cost for everyone in Indonesia.
Bicarakan.id was founded in March 2020 and already has 11 people on its team. At the beginning of its establishment, the Talk about online counseling service could only be accessed on the website with an initial fee of Rp. 149 thousand per session.
Currently, the cost per session starts from IDR 189 thousand. Available online counseling services, namely individuals and couples. Now, users can schedule online counseling sessions via Google Play Store and Apps Store in less than 5 minutes.
Apart from being online, Bicarakan.id also offers face-to-face counseling services for individuals and couples through Rumah Bicara.
This facility makes it easier for Speakers (as discussed by the users of Bicarakan.id) to meet face-to-face with the counselor of their choice. Users can also schedule counseling sessions directly there.
Currently, Bicarakan.id has 26 active counselor partners. According to Andreas, he handled the counselor curation process with the Head of Counseling Operations Mario Albert. Anyone can apply to join as a partner as long as they have a Psychologist Practice License (SIPP).
East Ventures Investment and Business Plan
On this occasion, Andreas also revealed that the Bicarakan.id platform has obtained pre-seed funding from East Ventures with an undisclosed amount.
His party is also discussing with several other investors to accelerate the development plan of Bicarakan.id into an optimal mental health service ecosystem in Indonesia.
His party has the vision to build a quality, affordable service ecosystem that is equipped with related content, such as journaling and meditation.
Through this platform, he has the vision to encourage Indonesian people to be more open to problems, validate emotions, and appreciate the importance of talking about problems, not letting them go.
“Currently, we are focused on developing a quality, complete and affordable mental health service ecosystem. There are three main areas of our development, namely applications, content, and increasing the number of counselors and counseling services,” he said.