Social discovery and friend finding apps at their core are about improving people’s mental health. One of the best things you can do to improve the quality of your life, is surround yourself with supportive friends. But sometimes, getting help from someone who doesn’t know who you are, can allow you to be more open, with less at stake for your day to day life. One social discovery app for farmers has taken this exact route to help combat mental health issues in the industry.
AgTalk is a Canadian based app launched by the Do More Agriculture Foundation (DMAF) this year. This time of year can be particularly stressful for farmers when harvesting. How well crops turn out can have huge financial implications. Farmers’ days are long and their stress is high. But a lot of their long hours will be spent in machinery where they have time to talk. The AgTalk app for Canadian farmers over the age of 16, anonymously matches up farmers from across the country to share and talk, and provide support to one another.
Megz Reynolds is the executive director of DMAF and she said recently:
“During harvest you’ve got a lot of time that you’re sitting in a piece of equipment, so you can phone a friend and have a chat, reach out to someone and make sure you’re staying connected. We’re really encouraging individuals who may be in a good place to also sign up for AgTalk to be there, to be that support person for other people in the industry who are going through things that they might have a better understanding of.”
It’s a super interesting approach and idea to social discovery. At its best social discovery reduces loneliness and provides quality human connection. Sometimes that is best when it comes from someone who you know you might never bump into again. You can offload your worries, be vulnerable, and not worry about awkwardness in the future. It’s actually quite a powerful thing. As much as long-lasting supportive friendships can improve your mental health – the power of such anonymous interactions can be super beneficial in the short term.
AgTalk is, as said, targeted at the farming industry, and users are monitored 24/7 by mental health clinicians to ensure the app is fulfilling its purpose. It would be interesting to see if the anonymous approach to social discovery is a trend we see emerge in different sectors and for different audiences in the coming years.