Mental Health Week designed to increase awareness

GCU News Bureau

September was National Suicide Prevention and Awareness Month, and Grand Canyon University is kicking off October with the You Are campaign, devoted to building on that theme.

The campaign is a multi-departmental effort seeking to educate students about resources available to them. There will be flyers and message boards across campus, all with a QR code that links them to the Office of Student Care website and its Crisis Services page.

Residence Life and Student Engagement will play an important role in spreading awareness through the distribution of specially designed stickers with affirmations such as: Significant, Not Alone, Valued, Seen and Worthy.

“It will get students linked to the text lines and the hotlines that they may need in the middle of the night when they are alone and feeling a certain way and get them immediately connected to something that will help them,” said Christine Pemberton, Director of the Office of Student Care.

“Hopefully they’ll find someone to talk to who will get them over that spot, and then the next day they can come in and see us or reach out to their own counselor.”

The need is there on college campuses across the country, especially considering that many students are away from home for the first time after spending more than a year with their parents during the pandemic.

Pemberton emphasized that her office seeks to erase the stigma associated with mental health and hopes to get the message to students who know someone having a hard time with the transition as well those who need the help.

The Office of Student Care has crisis appointments built into its schedule every day. But students need to know that.

“It’s just a matter of putting it out there – affirmation,” Pemberton said.

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GCU Magazine

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