St. Paul’s receives $25,000 grant from Bell Let’s Talk

Thursday, May 6, 2021

St. Paul's students working together

Last month, Bell Let’s Talk announced that funding of more than $3 million in grants would be allocated to 123 colleges and universities across Canada. As part of this funding, St. Paul’s has been awarded $25,000 to invest in necessary resources to develop a mental health and well-being strategy for our campus community in line with the newly launched National Standard of Canada for Mental Health and Well-Being for Post-Secondary Students.

“The mental health and well-being of our students, faculty and staff is a top priority at St. Paul’s,” said Richard Myers, principal. “This grant will allow us to complete a comprehensive review of our current situation and develop a plan consistent with the National Standard.”

The National Standard is a set of flexible and voluntary guidelines meant to help post-secondary institutions support the mental health and well-being of their students. Funded in part by Bell Let’s Talk, the standard was produced by the Mental Health Commission of Canada in partnership with Universities Canada and Colleges & Institutes Canada with the collaboration of the Canadian Standards Association.

It will help the College support increased mental health awareness, reduce stigma, improve life and resiliency skills, create a healthier and safer educational environment for all. One of the first steps the College will take towards this new standard will involve establishing a working group with representation from all stakeholder groups within the College’s campus community.

“I appreciate that the standard is flexible enough to be adapted to different circumstances and realities,” said Stephen Prentice, director of student life. “In our case, we primarily support first-year students who may have different needs than those in upper years.

“The standard was developed in consultation with experts and post-secondary leaders from all across Canada so we know we will be guided by best practice while finding ways to adapt the guidelines to fit within our own community needs.”

The mental health working group is currently assembling its members as well as identifying the resources that will be required to support the review and development of the action plan.

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