Friends of Women Outreach

Friends of Women Outreach

Chatbot to Support the Mental Health of Teenage Mothers (Sierra Leone)


In Sierra Leone 34% of girls aged 15-19 have started childbearing[1] and estimates of drug use among them range from 11% to 52%[2]. Teen mothers in the slums of Freetown live in extreme poverty and under community stigma often with unhealthy diet and mental health problems.

Our Artificial Intelligence Chatbot will provide evidence-based information on NCDs and NCD risk behaviours for them. We are training 40 teen mothers to engage their peers and to encourage them to use the Chatbot via Facebook. The Chatbot will also be promoted and installed in 60 Internet Café across Freetown.

The 40 selected mothers will then be educated on basic mental health counselling for depression and anxiety and the use of Telehealth to deliver mental health counselling.


References:

1. UNFPA, 2011, Children Bearing Children: The Determinants and Consequences of Teenage Pregnancy and Motherhood in Sierra Leone, available at https://sierraleone.unfpa.org/sites/default/files/pub-pdf/UNFPA-Children_Bearing_Children-SL.pdf. Accessed 27 April 2021

2. Teagle SE,  Brindis CD, 1998, Substance Use Among Pregnant Adolescents: A Comparison of Self-Reported Use and Provider Perception Journal of Adolescent Health Volume 22, Issue 3, March 1998, page 234, available at https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1054139X97001705. Accessed 27 April 2021