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Community Solutions Accelerator (CSA)

Challenge 2 – Mental Health and Wellness/Fitness App For First Responders

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Challenge #2
Mental Health and Wellness/Fitness App for First Responders

Challenge Overview (Part 1 of 2) – This is to gather the requirements and to ask the right questions…

NEW: Winner Announced – Read the Press Release

Please see our new Challenge (Part 2 of 2) below – Link at:

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.

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.

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 in the marketplace?
  5. In an ideal world, what does the optimal solution look like?
  6. Are there existing commercial solution(s) that fulfill these needs?

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).

Challenge Guidelines

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 Timelines

Challenge opens Mar 11, 2020 and closes Mar 31, 2020 with judging concluding Apr 30, 2020

Please submit your response at

Next Steps (New Challenge)

Thank you to all that participated in the Step 1 (first challenge on this topic). We now have our requirements and the new challenge is ready. More details can be found at:

The Press Release pertaining to the new challenge can be found here