HSF Bounce Forward campaign raises mental health awareness

A student enjoys quality time with a Bounce Forward event therapy dog. (Katie Jones)

A student enjoys quality time with a Bounce Forward event therapy dog. (Katie Jones)

Corey Brehaut

The Bounce Forward Mental Health & Wellness Fair was in full swing at Humber College North campus Tuesday afternoon to bring attention to an important cause.

The Humber Students’ Federation put on the event in conjunction with Health & Counselling Services, Humber Athletics and Mental Health First Aid at the Student Centre on the North campus.

“I think we all deal with mental health problems and issues sometimes. This is really about spreading awareness and about how we’re all in this together,” said HSF president Ahmed Tahir. “Mental health is something that affects everyone and you can see all the things happening.

The event offered students many activities to help de-stress and relax for the afternoon. Students could get a massage, paint, sample some David’s Tea and even pet a therapy dog.

“The great thing about it is that whatever appeals to specific students, they can go, check out what they want to do and take part in [it],” he said.

“Today we’re [doing] an activity where students are asked to pick their mood based on the colour of the icing that we have. We have ‘super’, ‘rough’, ‘meh’, ‘a’ight’ and ‘good’,” said Kathy Kalpakiotis, president of Jack.org, a youth run grassroots organization dedicated to changing the discussion around mental health. “They pick the colour, mark it on the cookie and then they eat it.”

The school has many services available for students going through hard times or having health issues, said Tahir.

“Humber has counseling services, (and) the Health Centre which I think completely transformed the North campus,” said Tahir.

The Bounce Forward event was founded in order for students to be more engaged in the discussion on mental health.

“I started this here because I wanted a place for us to talk about it rather than just a resource for people to go to. I know people are interested in learning more in talking about mental health and that’s what I want to provide,” Kalpakiotis said.

With files from Ryan Durgy and Katie Jones

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