Ontario's government is increasing funding to expand mental health services for postsecondary students across the province.
Ross Romano, Minister of Colleges and Universities, today announced an additional $1 million to help Kids Help Phone to expand Good2Talk services in order to reach and support more postsecondary students.
Good2Talk is Ontario's bilingual mental health support service, providing professional counselling, information and referrals, and is available to all postsecondary students 24/7, 365 days a year.
This new money will enable Good2Talk to offer help through Crisis Text Line powered by Kids Help Phone, a platform that provides trained volunteer support through text message, and will ensure students at Indigenous Institutes in Ontario are aware of this free service for all postsecondary students.
"Helping all Ontario's students maintain their mental health is critical to supporting student resilience and success. We know that over the last several years the mental health needs of postsecondary students have increased dramatically in Ontario," said Romano,
Good2Talk currently fields more than 2,000 calls per month, with annual demand on the rise.
According to the last National College Health Assessment (2016), within the past 12 months:
- 46 per cent of Ontario’s postsecondary students reported that they felt symptoms of depression compromising their ability to function.
- 65 per cent feel overwhelming anxiety (an increase of 13 per cent in three years)