Chasing the Stigma meets Hiyield
Chasing the Stigma meets Hiyield

Hub of Hope gets a makeover!

Since 2017 Chasing the Stigma have been striving to make it as easy as possible for people to find and access timely support during any stage of their mental health journey with the help of Liverpool-based software development consultancy Mashbo who stood behind Hub of Hope tech over the past 7 years. We achieved a lot, with 22,000+ people visiting the Hub of Hope monthly and 16,200+ app downloads per month, on average.


As we approach our 7th birthday, with the increasing demand for mental health signposting across communities, we decided to advance the Hub of Hope by redeveloping it into an even more impactful tool, making the journey from seeking help to receiving support as seamless as possible. Recognising the critical role of the Hub in providing accessible help to those in need, we have embarked on a project to revamp the core technical framework and user interface of the platform so we can continue to help more and more people find the right support when they need it.


To do that we needed the support of a new and experienced team of researchers, creatives and technologists. Following many months of user discovery work, followed by a long and robust procurement process, we found our new technology partner in sunny Cornwall at Hiyield – a climate conscious digital product studio championing tech for good. The Hiyield team excels in bespoke software and digital solutions with a purpose, delivering projects that contribute positively to society and we know we can trust their perfect mix of innovative product design and tech specialists.


The partnership officially began in March 2024 and we want to give you a behind-the-scenes look at what we have been up to…


Reimagined user experience and new prototype

The redevelopment project will focus on creating a robust, scalable infrastructure that supports a growing database of over 14,000 services, incorporating advanced search functionality, a dedicated pathway for young people and the development of data capabilities that can make a difference in policy-making and support for mental health provision across the UK.




With a user journey at the forefront of the redesign, in the past 12 months, we have carried out an intensive user discovery exercise to fully understand the needs and mindsets of our users, whether they are a person in crisis, someone looking for support for themselves or a loved-one, a frontline professional signposting others to support or policy-maker making data-driven decisions.

– Justyna Lisiecka, Head of Digital Development and Insights at Chasing the Stigma


We did this by:

  • Bringing all the key stakeholders and members of the project team together through a number of workshops, with the outcome being a log of over 130 prioritised features and user stories across various areas of the platform.
  • Reviewing current internal processes to understand how we can make it easier to keep the directory up-to-date through the joint effort of the powerful community of services and our dedicated Service Development and Quality Assurance Team.
  • Conducting a range of quantitative and qualitative user research activities including young persons user research facilitated by external research partner Turquoise Thinking.
  • Designing a prototype of the new app and conducting usability testing with students at local schools in Merseyside, with special participation by school councillors.


We would like to thank all young consultants from The National Youth Agency, The Children’s Society, Participation People, Kirkby High School and Calderstones School who helped us explore how the journey for young people seeking mental health support online looks like and how we can make it even better for them.



Improved filters for finding the right support

Central to the development of a new Hub of Hope is a review of existing filtering options, carried out by our Service Development Team. We’re looking to modify these filters to empower users with more bespoke and specific search capabilities, ensuring they can effortlessly find the support they need. By refining these filters we’re crafting an experience that swiftly directs individuals to suitable support, as well as minimising effort and maximising impact. This overhaul marks a huge step forward in our commitment to fostering mental well-being and accessibility to support services across the UK.


This initiative isn’t merely a response to the platform redevelopment project; it’s been our approach since the inception of the Hub of Hope. Over the years, we’ve listened to feedback from both users and external stakeholders, continually adding filters and categories such as Young Persons Support, Bereaved by Suicide, Peer Support, Physical Activity and Movement, as well as Financial Support and Loneliness as a result of the cost of living crisis and the impact of Covid-19. This holistic approach shows our dedication to creating a platform that truly serves the diverse needs of the mental health landscape.

– Anna Bennett, Service Development Manager at Chasing the Stigma


Thanks to the work of the entire project team and help from Chasing the Stigma partners and supporters, the new platform will serve as a cornerstone for community support, empowering individuals with the means to find support right for them and we can not wait to share on what we have been working on with you all later in 2024.

Watch this space for more updates throughout the build!

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