Scrapbooking app, Storychest, has seen a 400 per cent increase in monthly registered users since lockdown began on 23 March.
Storychest founder, Charlotte McMillan, puts the increase down to the innate human need for people to experience life with their own tribe, which is why the app was created. She says: “The idea for Storychest came from my own desire to keep stories about my family alive, including stories about my grandmother, who was a much-loved and central person in our family, and my father, a larger-than-life character who touched the lives of many, but who sadly passed away before my children were born.
“I’ve passed on my grandmother’s recipes to my children through Storychest and mementoes from my father, including postcards he sent me as child when he and mum went to Europe on trip (I grew up in Australia). I wanted to create a way for my family and other families to capture the essence of their personal stories, so I created the Storychest app.”
Over the last 70 days, Storychest has seen a massive upsurge in new people downloading the app, especially among women over 55; as well as existing users who have been keeping COVID-19 diaries digitally to preserve their thoughts and feelings of the time for future generations. The app can be used by anyone aged 13 or over.
Storychest plans to continue its outreach to families, especially to those members who are over 65 and vulnerable people who are still shielding due to health concerns. McMillian is also encouraging younger members of families to capture their thoughts during lockdown.
“Children have such a unique and unaffected lens through which they see the world, and we’re really keen for them to reflect on this fundamental time in our modern history,” she says. “I’m asking my own children and friends’ children to capture it in their own words or pictures, as something to look back on as we work towards our ‘new normal.”
The app is currently available on iOs, with the founding team currently seeking funding to develop and Android version.