Contributed by Monique Nelson
As a mother of two school aged children and posAbilities Family Resources Coordinator, I look forward to fall and all of the events and learning opportunities that it brings. It’s time to establish routines, meet new teachers, see old friends, try out some new extracurricular activities and get excited about learning. Along with all of that change, comes a good measure of challenge and increased stress too.
Going back to school also means that new relationships need to be formed and emotions can run high, particularly if family members are struggling with anxiety or have additional support needs. Not to mention the rising costs of outfitting students and the uncertainty that arose around the labour dispute between BC teachers and the provincial government. During times like this, a little extra support and knowing where to turn for resources can help pave the way for a smooth transition.
The Kelty Mental Health Resource Centre provides a list of mental health resources on their site. Here are a few we would like to share:
- Anxiety BC Home Page – Contains a wealth of information to help people successfully recognize anxiety and learn about effective tools – ‘healthy thinking’, ‘facing fears’, and ‘relaxation’ – to help manage it.
- Anxiety BC Mobile App MindShift – A FREE app that acts as a portable coach to help individuals face challenging situations and take charge of their lives.
- Anxiety BC Brochures – A list of several helpful brochures about anxiety disorders.
- Mind Check – A website designed to help youth check out how they’re feeling and quickly connect to mental health resources and support. Support includes education, self-care tools, website links, and assistance in connecting to local professional resources.
- Force: Society for Kids Mental Health – A provincial organization that provides families an opportunity to speak with other families who may be able to offer support or advice on what has worked for them. The F.O.R.C.E. also provides families and professionals with information, tools, and tips on how to support and assist children with mental health difficulties.
In keeping with the back to school theme, some resources to facilitate transition recently crossed my desk care of the BC Epilepsy Society, which provides a variety of resources and services for teachers and students as part of the Partners in Teaching program. These include seizure awareness workshops, classroom resource kits, and a variety of educational materials. For more information, please
contact the BC Epilepsy Society at (604) 875-6704, email [email protected] or visit www.bcepilepsy.com.