In any given year, 1 in 5 Canadians will suffer from a mental health problem.* Most will suffer in silence.
Tap into some of the resources available through your group benefits plan and inform your employees of the options available to them. Not sure where to begin? Here are three ideas (with resources) to give your existing mental health program a boost:
Idea #1: Use what you’ve got!
Employee Assistance Plans have been around for awhile – are you on top of what yours provides proactively versus only when employees call? Arete offers podcasts, content, and even holds a conference to provide support and information about good mental health.
Contact your EAP provider regarding materials or content they can share with you – before someone is in a situation of need. Support and information can educate so when someone needs help, they don’t lose time trying to know where to turn.
Idea #2: Bring visibility to mental health in the workplace.
Objective material to bring visibility to mental health in the workplace, not-for-profit Partners for Mental Health run a national program called “Not Myself Today” that provides materials (posters, buttons, supports for lunch and learns/webinars) for organizations to use all year round.
Explore Not Myself Today as an added resource to your mental health awareness program. Visit their site for ideas and inspiration – we can all do better when supporting or starting a conversation around mental health.
Idea #3: Check yourself
Are you, yourself comfortable with mental health as a topic? Can you be supportive and a resource to someone when they need help? Are you comfortable with your own mental health? Find out using the tools found on Change4Life** from a personal health risk assessment that can help you consider your own mental health, to resources and information that will support you in situations requiring support, the Change4Life portal is a customizable tool at your fingertips.
**available free to members of a Green Shield Canada health and dental plan
A way to assess, then start a conversation with your doctor in a number of areas: http://www.heretohelp.bc.ca/screening-self-tests
Optimism quick study (not a clinical tool but can raise your awareness of your personal state) https://www.howatthronline.com/quicksurveys/optimismintro.a5w
There are local chapters of the Canadian Mental Health Association all across the country: http://www.cmha.ca/get-involved/find-your-cmha/ – look up “Bounce Back” for your area – it’s a free self-help program offered nationally.
Visit places dedicated to the mental health conversation and resources: http://www.ementalhealth.ca/
Public Health Units are municipal agencies that provide programming and resources for a number of health-related areas http://www.health.gov.on.ca/en/common/system/services/phu/