Mental Health for Students
If this is an emergency, call 911. If you or someone you know is in crisis or needs help:
- Guelph/Wellington: 1 844 437 3247 (HERE247)
- Dufferin: 519 941 1530 (DCAFS)
- KidsHelpPhone: 1 800 668 6868
This summer, the UGDSB is offering mental health support to students experiencing difficulties. To connect with a clinician please call 519-822-4420 ext. 588. The messages are picked up daily and all calls will be returned within 24 hours. **NOTE; this is not a crisis line and if you are in crisis you can call HERE 24/7 (Wellington/Guelph) at 1-844-437-3247 or DCAFS (Dufferin) at 519-941-1530.
Mental Health Resources and Supports for Students in the UGDSB
We've launched a new website, Mental Health & Me, which focuses on student mental health in the UGDSB and provides age appropriate supports and resources.
Students, to visit the site please click the following link and log-in using your UGCloud account: Mental Health & Me
Concerns with mental health can happen to anyone. Children and youth can suffer from the same challenges that confront adults – anxiety, depression, eating disorders, mood disorders, substance abuse, and more. One in five children experience mental health concerns. So you are not alone. Many other children and youth face similar challenges that you or your friends are facing. There are many supports and resources that can help you and your friends.
We hope the following links will help you find out more about mental health and where to go for help if you need or someone you know needs it:
- Anxiety resources: https://anxietycanada.com/
- Breathing exercises: https://www.ugdsb.ca/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/calm_breathing-1.pdf
- Emotional regulation activities: https://ugshare.ugdsb.on.ca/docushare/dsweb/Get/Document-13323
- Brain Exercises: Did you know that you can actually change the “strength” and capacity of your brain to focus and concentrate? Exercising your brain is as important as exercising your body. Here are some fun ways to give your brains a workout:
- Practice identifying single ingredients when you eat
- Practice listening for each instrument in music
- Play Sudoku or other strategy type games
- For some fun on-line brain exercises try Luminosity.com, Braingle.com or Queendom.com
- Study Tips:
- Take 5 minutes every hour to take a breath
- Visualize a relaxing place – research shows that your brain responds the same to visualization as it does to the actual activity
- Take short walks. Studies have proven that a 20 minute walk before a test can boost brain power and memory. It is the single most effective way to maximize brain performance
- Try a peppermint lozenge or essential oil. Scents have been known to alter moods and peppermint is said to decrease stress and increase cognitive performance
- Eat well
- Sleep enough
- Make time for connecting to others
Concerns with mental health can happen to anyone. Children and youth can suffer from the same challenges that confront adults – anxiety, depression, eating disorders, mood disorders, substance abuse, and more. 1 in 5 children experience mental health concerns. So you are not alone. Many other children and youth face similar challenges that you or your friends are facing. There are many supports and resources that can help you and your friends. We hope the following links will help you find out more about mental health and where to go for help if you need or someone you know needs it.
- Apps for Mental Health (PDF)
- Calm Breathing Exercises (PDF)
- CMHA Fact Sheet: Youth Mental Health (PDF)
- Mental Health Tips from CMHA (PDF)
Mental Health and Addiction Websites
Dufferin Child and Family Services (DCAFS) provides information about mental health and services available to children and youth in Dufferin County.
Canadian Mental Health Association Waterloo Wellington Dufferin (CMHAWWD) provides information about mental health concerns and services available in Guelph/Wellington.
Kids Help Phone provides phone and web counselling for youth under the age of 20. Support is free, 24/7, anonymous and confidential.
Shed the Light is a Youth-Led Group in Dufferin County that is dedicated to reducing the stigma re: mental health challenges/issues.
Giving Light Offers Worth and Wellness (GLOWW) is a youth-led group that meets to bring awareness to mental health issues. We are also passionate about reducing stigma associated with youth mental health.
Mind your mind is a place for youth and young adults to access info, resources and tools during tough times. Help Yourself. Help each other. Share what you live and know.
SiOS is part of collaboration between the University of Guelph and McGill University, a non-profit outreach initiative providing information and resources about self-injury to those who self-injure, those who have recovered, and those who want to help.
Anxiety BC has an excellent website with information and interactive activities to learn about anxiety and learn how to cope more effectively.
Stress Lessons is a program from the Psychology Foundation of Canada. They provide lessons, information and activities to raise awareness and developing coping strategies for dealing with stress.
Children’s Mental Health Ontario provides resources about mental health and well-being.
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) provides information about mental health and addictions including information for children and youth.
Teen Suicide Prevention Video (YouTube). In this video created by the Mayo Clinic, teens describe common signs that a teen is considering suicide and provide encouragement for communicating directly and immediately for support and safety. It also Includes suggestions for what to say to a teen who may be at risk for suicide and ways to keep them safe. This is a U.S. video, so the number at the end is for the United States. In our area, please contact HERE247 (1 844 437 3247), DCAFS 519 941 1530 or KidsHelpPhone.ca 1 800 668 6868 if you or your child/teen needs someone to talk to.
Mental Health and Well-being Action Plan
Child and Youth Mental Health and Well-being Week
Child and Youth Mental Health and Well-being Week is the first week of May. It is about promoting mental wellness, increasing awareness of the child and youth mental health, decreasing stigma and understanding that support is available. Let’s improve everyone’s mental health and well- being!
The theme for Child and Youth Mental Health and Well-being at the UGDSB is: Have a SUPER Week!
Each day of the week focuses on a different aspect of mental health and well-being. UGDSB schools are provided with resources and activities related to each day’s theme.
Ensuring positive student mental health is a shared responsibility of students, staff, parents/guardians and community partners. As part of the provincial Open Minds, Healthy Minds Mental Health Strategy, our board’s Mental Health and Addiction Lead works with stakeholders within our board and in our community, to promote: mentally healthy schools; student mental well being; educator mental health awareness and knowledge; evidence based prevention programs; and clear pathways to care. We hope the following resources and information will help support mental health and well-being in children, youth and families.