By Ashton Chugh
Oct. 7–12 is Mental Health Awareness Week at the University of Calgary — a series of events organized by the Students’ Union Wellness Centre to promote mental health on campus.
“My perspective on the week is to really get people talking about mental health and to show students that if they are having trouble, there are a lot of different types of support that they should use,” said SU vice-president academic and speaker-series organizer Emily Macphail.
The week consists of workshops and events designed to educate students about mental health and strategies and coping skills for dealing with mental illness.
Macphail said the issue is important because “one in five people will experience a mental health issue in their lifetime.”
Events will include workshops on nutrition, collaborative art and addictions.
According to Macphail, event organizers hope the week will reduce some of the stigma surrounding mental illness. But Macphail said a lot of work needs to be done first.
“Personally, I think in an ideal world that would be great and maybe one day we’ll get there,” Macphail said. “I think that we’re seeing the discussion around mental illness really pick up and some of the stigma start to lower, but it is definitely still around and we’re going to have a long road towards ending it.”
The week wraps up with Outrun The Stigma, followed by a mental health resource fair.