Chatting about mental health over s’mores

Bell Let’s Talk day invites students to speak on the stigmas surrounding mental health

TRU staff writer Maryam shared her note with campus; “One kind word can make a huge difference in someone’s day.” (Maryam Soroopour/The Omega)

This year, Bell Let’s Talk day looked a little different from previous years as the pandemic continues. Students gathered outside and shared some time to discuss mental wellness and combat the stigma surrounding mental health.

Last Wednesday’s events, held by the TRU Wellness Centre, saw students come together to share warm chats and s’mores around the bonfire outside of Old Main.

The Wellness Centre is one of the campus pillars in students’ mental wellness. The centre is a hub for information on different ways to ease stress, anxiety and other concerns that may impose on your time studying. 

The event offered students a chance to share a note about mental wellness and share a warm drink with the group. The Wellness Centre also handed out swag to students including the classic Bell toque and s’mores kits.

The campus event was a great break from the stress of the new semester. Laughs and lively conversations could be heard as students attempted to make the perfect s’more.

“It’s just a way to draw people in and to have fun outside with serious topics like mental illness and mental health. So, it’s been very well-received, people love it, we love to be able to chat with students and offer them some support,” said Chelsea Corsi, senior Wellness Centre coordinator, said.

The given campaign aims to encourage people to share their mental health issues, and to force hashtag sharing throughout different social networks. All the money raised goes to mental health organizations.

Bell Let’s Talk day aims is to engage in dialogue about mental health, with intending to reduce the stigma surrounding the topic. Bell reports that since 2011, 83 per cent of Canadians believe attitudes about mental illness have changed for the better.

Swagath Swamy, Student Wellness Ambassador Team says “it is really nice to finally see students gather again in-person since virtual events are not as fun as in-person events.”  The wellness center ambassador teams were happy to see a lot of students attend the event.

Many students know someone or have experienced mental illness in some way. The Omega spoke with a few students on their views.

Li J, a third-year science student said, “the only advantage about the whole pandemic is that it highlighted the importance of providing an accessible amount of mental and wellness health from the wellness center.” In addition, “listening to others tell you their problems or their fear makes you happy about your simple problems when compared to theirs,” says J.

Mohammed Mansoori, an ESL student said, “…having struggled with depression throughout my youth I know how important it is to speak openly and honestly about mental health issues. I always make sure to record my voice at the end of each day this technique has helped me recover and heal from the past. I encourage everyone to do this technique. It will help you feel better and build confidence in every action you do.”

The Wellness Centre works throughout the semester to support students and to help with their mental health. The wellness ambassadors are always happy to have a little chat with you and they might be able to give you solutions to your problems. Make sure you visit the Wellness Center between your classes.