Two new programs launched to support students, staff and faculty at Red River College

Red River College today announced two new support services as part of the Healthy Minds Healthy College initiative aimed at enhancing mental health programming for students, staff and faculty.

The announcement is part of a broader awareness-raising event, held today in the North Gym at the Notre Dame Campus and featuring TSN journalist Michael Landsberg presenting his #SICKNOTWEAK talk to the RRC community.

“We’re excited that Michael has joined us today to help us announce these new and important initiatives but to also hear him talk about his personal battle with depression as part of his #SICKNOTWEAK movement,” said Paul Vogt, president of Red River College. “Michael’s leadership has made a tremendous difference in the lives of many Canadians.”

The two new programs being launched by the College today include:

The Red River ReliefLine is a 24/7 online peer support service, provided free of charge to all students. Students can access trained listeners through their computer, tablet, or smart phone. RRC has purchased a one-year license for this service with funds from a Program Innovation Fund. The service is available in a variety of languages and gives students access to simple therapeutic exercises that can enhance coping.

The Working Mind is an educational workplace mental health and wellness program developed and endorsed by the Mental Health Commission of Canada. It is designed to promote mental health and reduce stigma of mental health problems and illnesses in the workplace. The training helps individuals identify poor mental health in themselves and others, while building resiliency. RRC has committed to training four internal champions who will in turn deliver the program to others.

“As both an educational institution and employer, RRC recognizes that it has a responsibility to create a safe, responsive and healthy environment that supports mental health and well-being for students, staff and faculty,” says Breanna Sawatzky, Mental Health Coordinator, Red River College. “For students, RRC is where they will learn and practice key competencies that set them up for success in their future workplaces. Learning to support their own positive mental health, and reach out for help when need, are among those competencies.”