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World Suicide Prevention Day: New resource at BC colleges provides support for suicide prevention on campus

World Suicide Day: New resource at BC’s colleges provides support for suicide prevention on campus

In recognition of World Suicide Prevention day, the faculty and staff at BC’s colleges and universities launched a platform to support students experiencing mental health issues.

Sept. 10 is World Suicide Prevention Day.

To help struggling students, BCcampus, a government-funded organization launched a digital anti-stigma resource, Let’s Talk about Suicide: Raising Awarness and Supporting Students.

Their primary focus is to support BC's post-secondary institutions as they evolve their teaching and learning practices to create a better experience for students.

With the uncertainty of COVID-19, students may feel the need to talk to people about mental health challenges they might be facing, and this resource may help provide support.

"This new suicide prevention resource will help faculty and staff start courageous conversations with students, so that people who are struggling know someone cares, and that there is help and hope," says Sheila Malcolmson, minister of mental health and addictions.

The government says this resource offers sensitive, respectful, detailed training on suicide awareness and response.

"Now more than ever, post-secondary students, faculty and staff need access to mental health support," says Malcolmson.

Faculty and staff use case scenarios to practise conversations about suicide and build practical skills for supporting students who may be at risk of suicide.

The material can be used for a two-hour synchronous training session or as self-study.

Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Training Anne Kang says the goal is to help students succeed.

“We know that some days, students won't feel OK.”

She says distress may be caused by the uncertainty of moving to a new place, challenges with the ongoing pandemic, or being far from their loved ones and support networks.

She is committed to providing the mental health resources to help struggling students who feel the need to be heard.

BC's post-secondary students with mental health concerns can also access Here2Talk, a free and confidential 24/7 mental health counselling and referral service designed to support them which is available in French and English.

It is also offered in other languages, including Punjabi, Mandarin, Cantonese, Spanish and Arabic, based on availability.



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