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[This unedited press release is made available courtesy of Gamasutra and its partnership with notable game PR-related resource Games Press.]

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  • Kai’s Sanctuary launches in UK today free in App Store and Google Play (no in-app purchases)
  • Fully funded by Innovate UK - the UK’s innovation agency
  • Featuring the widest selection of CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) gamified exercises in a children’s app
  • Created by Brightlobe, makers of the world’s 1st mobile game that delivers child health insights for doctors and parents to help monitor and manage conditions like autism and ADHD (coming in 2021)


London, UK - 0600 BST, Wednesday 28th October 2020 - Brightlobe, a pioneering UK child health startup and games studio - is pleased to announce the launch of Kai’s Sanctuary, a new mobile game explicitly made to help children improve their mental health during the coronavirus pandemic. Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency, fully funded Kai’s Sanctuary to help children better manage their emotions with a breathtaking array of mindfulness and relaxation techniques. Kai’s Sanctuary launches today for free in the App Store, and in Google Play from early November 2020. Kai’s Sanctuary features no hidden costs and no in-app purchases.


Jane O’Rourke, Child, Adolescent and Family Psychotherapist, commented:

Over 80% of children with mental health difficulties said that COVID-19 had worsened their mental health. Children are feeling increasingly lonely and anxious, with a third unable to access the support they need. With Kai’s Sanctuary's app exercises, children can build a sense of self-agency so they feel more in control of their anxiety. Kai’s Sanctuary’s endearing characters encourage children to slow down with exercises like deep breathing. Slowing down calms the nervous system and increases children's capacity for self-reflection, so they can begin to identify their emotional states – and begin to understand the minds and feelings of others. Brightlobe is giving children in the UK a tool they can take with them for the rest of their lives, whenever they need to steady, calm and self-reflect.”


Kai’s Sanctuary features the biggest selection of gamified exercises rooted in mindfulness CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) available in a single mobile app. The game’s key protagonist is called Kai, an apprentice healer who works in a futuristic sanctuary that takes in sick or wounded guardians. The guardians are protectors of children in a world inspired by an original children’s novel written by Brightlobe CEO and Founder Shivani Lamba. Kai’s Sanctuary features a stunning feature set such as calming yoga exercises with a guru sloth, full body scanning games, deep breathing exercises with virtual creatures, and digital emotional assessment exercises, and soon to be added AR (Augmented Reality) adventures.


Shivani Lamba, CEO and Founder of Brightlobe, commented:

“Prior to the first coronavirus lockdown in March, Brightlobe was piloting our game-based developmental assessment platform, which is due for release in 2021. Early data showed that children's mental health was worsening, so we proposed a game-based solution to address this crisis. We thank Innovate UK for believing in the strength of our project, as our game is based firmly within published clinical research on the efficacy of mindfulness CBT. Kai's Sanctuary will evolve over time, with new content updates. This beta rollout for Kai’s Sanctuary will see Brightlobe actively engage with its capped launch audience to ensure future iterations are fully optimised before a global rollout. We'll also be supporting Kai's Sanctuary with Brightlobe Village, an interactive community during Q4, which will help the Brightlobe team to improve the release based on community feedback.”


Kai’s Sanctuary is the first content release from Brightlobe. The team is currently developing the world's first game-based developmental assessment platform, offering parents and physicians key insights into a child's trajectory to inform personalised, early interventions for conditions like ADHD and autism. The new product lives in the same IP universe as Kai's Sanctuary.


Download Kai’s Sanctuary today

App Store | Google Play


- ends -


For further information, interviews and exclusive content contact: 

Rana Rahman

Raptor PR 

[email protected] | Tel +44(0)20 +44(0)20 7390 0504 | +44(0)7985 635 071


About Brightlobe

Brightlobe is a VC-backed child health startup, serious games studio and publisher headquartered in London, which has raised over £500K in funding to date. Founded in 2013, Brightlobe has developed patent-pending technology that can assess and support a child’s developmental trajectory through mobile games and smart toys. These games feature original IP based on an original children’s book manuscript written by the founder, Shivani Lamba. Brightlobe is comprised of a talented, multidisciplinary team, including founder, software engineer and neuroscience researcher, Shivani Lamba; artist and animator, Oliver Timms; and mobile games developer, Ryan Murdoch. It counts prominent paediatric clinician, Professor Heidi Feldman (Stanford University), as an advisor; and investor and acting CTO Christopher Scollo, among others.


Shivani Lamba, CEO and Founder of Brightlobe

Shivani Lamba is a software engineer, creative technologist and the founder and CEO of Brightlobe, a VC-backed child health startup and games studio. Prior to her work at Brightlobe, she worked for 8+ years as a software engineer (most recently at the Financial Times) and for 5+ years as a neuroscience researcher at the National Institutes of Health as a Post-Baccalaureate IRTA Fellow. She studied neuroscience at University College London and graduated on an International Open Scholarship with a distinction for the highest-scoring finalist project undertaken at the UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health. 


About Jane O’Rourke

Jane O’Rourke is Founder of MINDinMIND, a resource of interviews and podcasts of leading clinicians working in child mental health. She is a Child, Adolescent and Family Psychotherapist and runs the counselling service in a primary school.


About Innovate UK

Innovate UK drives productivity and economic growth by supporting businesses to develop and realise the potential of new ideas. We connect businesses to the partners, customers and investors that can help them turn ideas into commercially successful products and services and business growth. We fund business and research collaborations to accelerate innovation and drive business investment into R&D. Our support is available to businesses across all economic sectors, value chains and UK regions. Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation.