Babson Student Startup: SuperHealos
Following personal health scares and unexpected family challenges, Babson MBA student Yuan Yin M’15 decided to reevaluate her priorities and follow a new dream. From it was born a team of SuperHealos.
Yuan: A SuperHealo is many things. It’s both the name of our business and a member of our team. It’s also a character in our company’s stories. But most importantly, it’s a friend, relative, sibling, parent, or anyone helping to empower a child who needs a little extra love in a difficult situation.
SuperHealos is a social enterprise dedicated to empowering children facing life’s toughest challenges. Through a focus on imagination, SuperHealos provides children with age appropriate stories and products to help them bridge the gap between sickness and recovery, loss and acceptance, fear and courage.
Yuan: In 2014, my husband lost his brother unexpectedly. It was a very difficult time. Shortly thereafter, I got very sick, very quickly, and had to stay in the hospital. While lying in the hospital bed, a little comfort went a long way, such as hearing a nice story or being able to wear something a little more comfortable. After I recovered, our family and friends united and realized the events in our lives had led us to one common interest – making the world a happier place for kids, especially those facing difficult circumstances. We had some initial ideas about making improvements to kids’ lives in the medical space and after talking to our network of contacts from all backgrounds, including doctors, nurses and therapists, SuperHealos was created.
Yuan: Our mission is to help kids cope with any of life’s challenges – medical diagnosis, grief, bullying, having a sick relative, and more – and reduce the stress that may be associated with each of them. As part of this mission, we’re dedicated to building meaningful, educational stories and resources to which children can relate, that can be then used to help caretakers start important conversations about their current situation and the road ahead.
We are also in the process of offering products that help boost morale and complement our stories, including the redesigned (and fun!) hospital gown and cape, which keep children feeling like SuperHealos well after the story is over.
Our immediate goal is to complete a successful SuperHealos Kickstarter campaign so we can fund the publishing of our first coloring storybook, SuperHealos Adventures in the Hospital. Once our story is out, we’ll be focused on our effort to redesign children’s hospital gowns to make them more fun and comfortable to wear, and are currently already distributing SuperHealos capes. We’re also deciding on our next SuperHealos book topics as we continue on our journey to touch the lives of children from all challenging situations, partner with professionals from an array of fields, and make as broad an impact as possible.
Yuan: The Babson community, its faculty, and students, have continued to provide tremendous support for SuperHealos, from idea to inception, and beyond. I started SuperHealos during Professor Caroline Daniels’ Marketing for Entrepreneurship class, and she continues to mentor my entire SuperHealos team. We’ve since joined The John E. and Alice L. Butler Venture Accelerator program, and it has been a great resource in building and developing the company, including market identification, general legal guidance, and many other essential tools. In addition, my MBA classes have not only taught me the business framework, but have also resulted in important mentor and peer relationships.
Most recently, Babson awarded the SuperHealos team with office space through its Hatchery Program, and we’re now able to concentrate on building the business and focusing on what’s truly important – the kids.
Yuan: Becoming a social entrepreneur and launching SuperHealos has, and will continue to be, an impactful ride – both for me and my team, as well as the children and families we encounter. I love seeing the smiles on children’s faces when they put on the SuperHealos cape. You can see their faces light up as they act like SuperHealos, and something in their demeanor begins to change. We’ve witnessed children try harder to cooperate with doctors, as well as treatment. And we’ve watched parents read the SuperHealos poems and stories to their kids who then repeatedly ask them to “read it again, read it again!” These moments really touch my heart and keep me going.
The Alter Ego
Yuan: If I had one superpower (other than being a SuperHealo of course!) I would love to be able to communicate with animals. With all of this crazy Boston weather, I could offer them fresh vegetables so they don’t chew all my flower bulbs…I could also understand what my two cats, Meatball and Mushroom, are thinking…especially when they give me those funny looks!