Brock and CMHA Niagara come together to support mental health support for athletes

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Brock University has joined forces with Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) Niagara to pilot and evaluate a sports mental health program called 'Talk Today'.

The program is one of the most comprehensive mental health programs for amateur sports in Canada for varsity student athletes.

During the fall semester, more than 50 Brock athletes from the women’s rugby and men’s soccer teams participated in the pilot. 

They received mental health and suicide prevention education and were paired with mental health coaches to provide support to any of the athletes in need of additional help throughout the season. 

In addition to supporting athletes, students wanting to learn more about mental health services can visit a dedicated kiosk on campus in the Walker Complex across from the Hungry Badger tomorrow, Nov. 16th, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

Originally launched by CMHA Ontario in partnership with the Ontario Hockey League in 2014, Talk Today provides an important opportunity to address the mental health needs of athletes across the province and across Canada. 

The program has grown to support the two highest levels of junior hockey, while continuing to see expansion in post-secondary institutions and minor sports organizations.

“My team's experience with the program was very positive. The mental health program benefited us throughout our season as it showed us the struggles we go through as varsity athletes, and that we are never alone,” said Abbie Wade, captain, Brock women's rugby. “It helped us balance and manage mental struggles while also being a student during season. The program taught us how to provide resources to someone who is struggling to ensure everyone has the help they need. Moving forward into the off-season, we hope to keep learning about mental health and how to keep our team environment a safe space for everyone.”

"Our groundbreaking partnership with CMHA Niagara introduces the Talk Today program, addressing mental health challenges in varsity sports,” said Melissa Krist, Brock Sports and Recreation executive director. “This collaborative effort emphasizes our commitment to evidence-based mental health promotion. Join us on Nov. 16 at the Walker Complex to raise awareness and foster dialogue on mental well-being in sports.”