Brescia to be the first university in Ontario to pilot new preventative mental health program

News Release
October 1, 2018
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

London, ON – On October 1st, Brescia University College will be the first university in the province to pilot a new student mental health program: Living Life to the Full. Offered in partnership with the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) Oxford, this group-based, preventative program offers Brescia students the opportunity to learn tactics and strategies to maximize their ability to deal with life’s challenges as a student; enhance coping skills and improve their thinking, feelings and mood.

Originally developed by UK psychiatrist, Dr. Chris Williams, Living Life to the Full is now offered throughout Canada, with CMHA British Columbia holding the country’s exclusive licence. Brescia’s 6-week program will utilize fun and engaging mental health activities and will focus on different wellness topics weekly, including: emotions; motivation; confidence; challenging negative, worrying thoughts; understanding why one feels the way they do; problem solving; recognizing and reducing unhelpful behaviours and anger and optimism.

“At Brescia, we know that post-secondary life is an exciting time but, as statistics across the country are demonstrating, it can also prompt feelings of anxiety,” says Sheldon Hill, Brescia’s Student Wellness Educator. “As a University that prides itself on being student-centred, we are always looking for ways to support and educate our students as they encounter academic pressures and challenging life situations. It is our hope that this program will help our students build resiliency and strengthen their feelings of confidence in their health, wellness and academic success.”

Living Life to the Full is the latest initiative launched as a result of Brescia’s comprehensive Mental Health Strategy, demonstrating Brescia’s focus on wellness promotion, self-management and skill-building to enhance the resilience and coping strategies of its students. In addition to this, nine months ago Brescia launched their campus-wide early alert program to provide earlier and more coordinated support to students who face difficulties that impact their ability to be successful and safe.

Created initially for older adults, Living Life to the Full has now been effectively trialed with individuals from multiple cross-sections and stages of life. Research trials have revealed the success of the course, outlining that it has been shown to help participants reduce the experience of depression and anxiety, shift how they respond to stresses in their lives and improve problem-solving skills and mood.

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For more information, please contact:

Colleen Aguilar, Director, Communications & External Relations at 519-432-8353, ext. 28293 or at colleen.aguilar@uwo.ca, or Caitlin Core, Communications, Marketing & External Relations Officer at 519-432-8353, ext. 28280 or at ccore@uwo.ca.

Brescia University College, Canada’s women’s university college, is affiliated with Western University. The 1,500 women registered as either full- or part-time students at Brescia study a wide variety of subjects in the Schools of Behavioural & Social Sciences, Food & Nutritional Sciences, Humanities and Leadership & Social Change in an empowering, compassionate, student-centred and invigorating environment. Degrees are granted by Western. The Catholic University College welcomes students from all backgrounds and values diversity. For more current and archived news, a listing of faculty experts, and photos please visit our Online Media Room, at http://media.bresciauc.ca/ .