This month’s featured service is BITEBACK, an online program from Black Dog Institute to promote wellbeing and resilience in young people. The program uses a range of online activities, psychoeducational, and positive psychology to promote gratitude, optimism, flow, meaning, hope, mindfulness, character strengths, healthy lifestyle, and positive relationships.
Black Dog Institute was founded in 2002 with the aim of improving the lives of people affected by mental illness through the rapid translation of high-quality research into improved clinical treatments, increased accessibility to mental health services, and delivery of long-term public health solutions.
BITEBACK is an online platform providing a space for young people to learn, develop and improve strategies to amplify the good stuff in life. The program guides users through six weekly challenges to improve mental fitness, using positive psychology activities that target primarily gratitude, mindfulness and social connections to improve resilience and wellbeing. With each completed week users are rewarded with a token. When three or more of the same token are collected users go into the draw for 1 of 6 $50 vouchers for their favourite brand.
BITEBACK users can register to the challenge to access:
- Interviews and blog posts promoting new ideas and role models who are making positive impacts and getting the most out of their own lives.
- Quizzes helping users identify their levels of mental fitness, focus/flow, gratitude, mindfulness, happiness and characteristics of their personality.
- A ‘bookshelf’ resource providing factsheets on positive psychology domains and dealing with tough teen issues.
- A community forum allowing young people to share and comment on their stories of resilience and others’ content.
BITEBACK also includes a mental fitness check-up quiz, personality quiz, mindfulness quiz, gratitude quiz, a gratitude think tank and photo library which are available to access without registration.
What are the benefits of using BITEBACK?
There are many benefits to using the BITEBACK including:
- Decrease symptoms of psychopathology.
- Increase wellbeing in young people.
- Improve mental health outcomes for Australian youth.
Is there a cost to use BITEBACK?
There is no cost to access BITEBACK.
How to access BITEBACK?
BITEBACK is available online at https://www.biteback.org.au/. For full access individuals are required to register with a screen name, email, password, month and year of birth, and postcode. Users also need to indicate how they heard about BITEBACK, whether they can email updates and have the option to provide their gender and choose to hide their location from public view on the site.
BITEBACK Research and Evaluation
BITEBACK was demonstrated to be effective in reducing stress, anxiety, and depression in a community sample of adolescents aged 12 to 18 years of age when used weekly over a period of 6 weeks.
Read more about BITEBACK’s research and evaluation at:
- Burckhardt, Rowan; Manicavasagar, Vijaya; Batterham, Philip J.; Miller, Leonie M.; Talbot, Elizabeth; Lum, Alistair; A Web-Based Adolescent Positive Psychology Program in Schools: Randomized Controlled Trial. Journal of Medical Internet Research, Vol 17(7), Jul, 2015 Publisher: Gunther Eysenbach.
- Manicavasagar, Vijaya; Horswood, Deserae; Burckhardt, Rowan; Lum, Alistair; Hadzi-Pavlovic, Dusan; Parker, Gordom; Feasibility and effectiveness of a web-based positive psychology program for youth mental health: randomized controlled trial. Journal of Medical Internet Research, Vol 16(6), Jun, 2014 pp. 23-39. Publisher: Gunther Eysenbach