Luca Sciascia: Gender based care for a healthier her.
WRITTEN BY TEAM ARISE
PUBLISHED MARCH 28, 2023
Luca Sciascia, the visionary founder of April Cares, is on a mission to revolutionise the way women approach their mental health and well-being. Luca was born and raised in the small countryside town of Bergamo, Italy. “In this countryside town, with about 1000 people, I grew up surrounded by women. It was my mom, two sisters, two aunts, my grandma and one female cousin. I was the only male.” It was this unusual upbringing, surrounded by influential women in his family, that sparked his early interest in supporting and empowering others.
Luca's journey began while working in a digital health company in Berlin. As he explored various sectors of the health tech industry, he noticed a significant gap in mental health solutions tailored specifically for women. While the Femtech market focused primarily on reproductive health, there was a lack of comprehensive mental health resources for women. This led Luca to dive deeper into the issue and uncover the pressing need for gender-sensitive mental health support.
A pivotal moment in Luca's journey came when a woman close to him in India faced challenging experiences due to societal pressures and gender expectations. Witnessing the toll this took on her mental well-being, he recognised the urgent need to address these social and cultural factors contributing to higher rates of depression and anxiety among women in India.
“I realised that women and men experienced life in different ways. And what I took for granted growing up with women was not the case outside in the real world.” Motivated to make a tangible impact and armed with a social entrepreneurship and international management background, Luca decided to start his venture in India, where he could tackle these issues head-on.
Luca's desire to provide accessible and effective mental health support for women led to the birth of April Cares. Acknowledging the scarcity of therapists in India and the financial and logistical challenges associated with traditional therapy, Luca envisioned a self-care platform that could empower women to take control of their mental well-being. Through April Cares, Luca aims to offer women a range of self-care tools and skills specifically designed to address their unique challenges. Guided by a structured and engaging approach, the platform leverages behavioural science elements to keep users engaged and supported throughout their self-care journey.
Luca's passion for making a positive impact led him to form a formidable team to bring April Cares to life. He joined forces with Sowmya, an experienced therapist with a PhD in cognitive-behavioural therapy, who shared his vision for gender-sensitive mental health care. Sowmya's wealth of experience and entrepreneurial mindset made her an invaluable asset to the team. Together, Luca and Sowmya spent countless hours collaborating and incorporating Sowmya's insights gained from interacting with women from diverse backgrounds.
In their quest to develop a user-friendly and scientifically driven platform, Luca and Sowmya sought a tech partner. Through a connection in Milan, they were introduced to Prady, whose passion for their vision was evident from the start. With Prady's expertise, the team set on a journey throughout 2022 and 2023 to build the backbone of April Cares, ensuring that it could effectively deliver the self-care resources women needed.
Luca's character traits of empathy, determination, and a genuine desire to help others stem from his own fortunate upbringing and supportive family structure. Observing his elder sister's dedication to women's health as she pursued a career in obstetrics and midwifery, Luca found inspiration to make a difference in people's lives and felt a deep sense of responsibility to use his life to positively impact others.
Luca’s vision of April Cares is rooted in providing the most affordable and high-quality solution for women to address their mental health challenges. By focusing on women's needs first and proving the effectiveness of gender-sensitive and culturally aware self-care, Luca envisions expanding the platform's reach to include individuals of all genders. His ultimate goal is to create a collective shift in prioritising mental health, fostering a society where everyone feels a little better, leading to positive changes in behaviours and a healthier, more sustainable world.
Luca exemplifies the transformative power of empathy, innovation, and determination. Through his own experiences, professional expertise, and unwavering commitment, he has created a platform that empowers women to prioritise their mental well-being and embark on a journey of self-care.