Helping Ontario's colleges and universities enhance capacity to support student mental health and well-being

Campus Initiative

Niagara Postsecondary Holistic Wellness Initiative – MHIF (Round 1)

Project Summary:

Built upon an Aboriginal understanding of wellness, which views mental health from a holistic perspective, the Niagara Postsecondary Holistic Wellness Initiative by Brock University and partner Niagara College developed an easily accessible, user-friendly online information portal and face-to-face programs to respond to the diverse mental health needs in Niagara.

By using a holistic approach to mental health that integrates the four aspects of wellbeing – emotional, intellectual, physical and spiritual – this innovative Portal ensures that from the onset, students have accessible, easy-to-use tools to prevent, identify and better manage the variety of issues that can lead to mental health issues. Included in this Portal are interactive personal wellness exploration tools and goal-setting resources, as well as news and events sections. A French site is also available to users.

The face-face-programming of the Holistic Wellness initiative enhances the ability of students to utilize the information in the Portal and provides students with the opportunity to participate in sessions and activities offered by Aboriginal Knowledge Keepers and wellness and mental health service providers.

The Mycircleofwellness.com portal provides a comprehensive hub of easily accessible information about relevant resources for Niagara’s diverse post-secondary student body and connects them with services that are able to support their emotional, intellectual, physical and spiritual needs, which may help in the early detection of issues that can lead to mental health crises that can hinder a student’s academic success and personal wellbeing.

Key Outcomes:

The website was launched in September, 2013. Through on-going promotions and face-to-face culturally sensitive sessions, we aim to increase student awareness and usage of the website. On-going student feedback will be used to develop phase two of the project. A student-log-in feature will be added, complete with interactive exploratory tools and the site will be available in both English and French.

Key Resources: 

Project’s website: www.mycircleofwellness.com

Project Contact:

Jill Brindle

Manager, A-Z Learning Services and Aboriginal Student Services
SDC, Brock University

Sarah Ellis

Government Relations Officer
Brock University

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