December is an exciting time of year for most families - getting each other Christmas presents, decorating the tree and of
Karen Dolva is CEO and co-founder of No Isolation (www.noisolation.com), an Oslo-based start-up founded in October 2015, with the goal of reducing involuntary social solitude. Its first product, a physical avatar called AV1, was designed to help children and young adults, forced by illness to take extended time away from school, to maintain a presence in the classroom, communicate with friends, and socialise. Before co-founding No Isolation, Karen studied Computer Science and Interaction Design at the University of Oslo, the highest ranked institution for education and research in Norway. During her studies, Karen began her career at StartupLab Oslo, and went on to co-found UX Lab - a user experience consultancy, created to help companies with user testing and the designing of digital user experiences. In founding UX Lab, Karen finished university early, leaving during her final semester of study. Karen identified the need for No Isolation when she met Anne Fi Troye - a mother who lost her teenage daughter to cancer. Through learning about Anne Fi’s continuous efforts to improve the lives of children in hospital, based on her own child’s experience of social solitude while unwell, Karen was inspired to use her personal knowledge of user experience and computer science to develop a tech-based solution. When speaking about the need for a company like No Isolation, Karen explains: “What we’ve seen is that it is impossible for children with long-term illnesses to stay connected with their lives. They are told to focus on their own health, but the healthiest thing for them would be to stay connected with their friends. Going back to school after a long period isn’t easy, and for those who suffer from chronic illness, the loneliness never really stops.”
There is no denying that Christmas is well on its way. The seasonal adverts are out, and the shopping rush has begun. However
29/11/2017 11:34 GMT
For me, loneliness was enough to make me quit my job and start No Isolation. I had no idea how big the issue really was, and I am still learning. If others are inspired to learn too, then perhaps we will find the answers we so desperately need.
10/11/2017 16:31 GMT
27/10/2017 12:13 BST
With every week that passes I grow increasingly upset with the world, so trying to change it for the better simply makes sense. The idea of somebody suffering in solitude, lacking meaningful connections in their life, is something I cannot abide. People need to be social
04/09/2017 13:55 BST
At No Isolation, we're taking steps every day to solve this problem. Heartbreakingly, people are often embarrassed to admit that they're lonely and so will continue to suffer in silence. Tackling loneliness begins by simply opening up this important conversation; making sure that society is aware of this on-going and critical issue, and encouraging those who are struggling in solitude to seek help.
11/08/2017 14:34 BST
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