Missional Innovation To Improve Suicide Prevention

Our friends at FaithTech, who were partners for Indigitous #HACK Waterloo, have been in the news lately for some of the cool things they are doing in Canada. FaithTech is a Canadian-based movement that is dedicated to “bridging the gap between faith and technology.”

FaithTech was recently featured in The Record, Waterloo’s largest newspaper, in an article titled “Stopping suicide using faith, training and tech.” The article talks about the A Survivor Story project – Most Innovative winner at Indigitous #HACK — and its attempts to reduce suicide through providing valuable resources to those who search for ways to kill themselves:

If you Google how to kill yourself, the top websites provide advice on how to do it. “That’s appalling,” [FaithTech founder James Kelly] said. But what if suicide prevention could be made to show as the top search result?

 “We want to build websites to help people that are in those very difficult situations,” he said.

The team that worked on A Survivor Story at Indigitous #HACK is still hard at work on the website. They are currently seeking a committed website designer and SEO expert. If you would like to help, please contact James Kelly.

A few days prior, Canadian newspaper Christian Courier published an article by Derek Shuurman titled “Faith and tech combine in Waterloo,” which describes his experience speaking at FaithTech Conversation Night and how he learned that technology is and should be at the forefront of the mission field. Shuurman is a man who understands technology, faith, and our calling to use our talents for God in the digital space.

During my visit I toured a sprawling tech incubator built in an old tannery building which served as a home for a range of high-tech startups. I was impressed by the creative energy displayed and encouraged by the fact that God was at work here too. I was delighted to discover a former student of mine from Redeemer who was now working in the tech incubator. Waterloo is home to one of the most vibrant tech hubs in the world, with the second highest start-up density in the world. Just like Daniel in Babylon, God has placed Christians in this cultural center.

 2016 has been an exciting year for Indigitous and for faith, innovation, and technology in general. We are excited to see groups like FaithTech bring exposure to the way people like you are using your talents for God to solve some of this world’s biggest problems. As Shuurman said, “It is exciting to see God at work in the high-tech centres of our world, changing hearts and moving Christians to share the Gospel not only through words, but also through efforts to develop responsible technology.”