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The identification of contextually relevant health and well-being information needs for the youth through human-centered co-design
Available health and well-being information is limited in communities with insufficient health care resources. This affects the community negatively on multiple levels in which the health and well-being needs of individuals are not satisfied. This research project explored the impact of human centred co-design, using tools such as health and well-being needs questionnaires including a health needs assessment as well as a quality of life scale. The aim was making accurate health and well-being information more accessible to the youth. The target group was Durbanville youth aged between 14 and 18 years. The sample included different ages ( = 15), races (79% White, 21% Coloured) and near equal gender distribution (55% female, 45% male). The sample (N = 33) was comprised of three groups: Group A, B, and C. A Human-Centered Design (HCD) framework was used during the project referring to the following three steps: Hear, Create, and Deliver. During the Hear phase, stories and inspiration from the participants were gathered. Group A (n = 10) completed a health and well-being information needs questionnaire. Group B (n = 15) discussed the topic, and created affinity diagrams. This was how the health and well-being status and information needs were established. During the Create phase; frameworks, opportunities, solutions, and prototypes were developed by the participants. Group B co-designed the concept prototype: a possible mobile application solution for practical access to health and well-being information. Group C (n = 8) provided feedback and input on the concept prototype and created storyboards to visually display scenarios in which they would use the mobile application. This step produced a youth-friendly health and well-being information service concept prototype. During the Deliver phase, the relevant health and well-being information solution was established as a youth-friendly health and well-being mobile application: WeHelp. Also, group A, B, and C were introduced to a similar existing resource named MobieG. Thus, the present study contributed directly to the participants’ health and well-being awareness. The research provided significant health and well-being insights. For example, the youth of Durbanville revealed extremely low scores on the emotional well-being domain. The data collected makes it possible for future researchers to create a practical, youth-friendly, health and well-being information service.