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Cambrian trades students given a lesson on mental health

Workshops help Cambrian students understand mental health and well-being, with emphasis on stigma, depression, anxiety and substance use
Trades students at Cambrian College in Sudbury take part in a workshop on positive mental health and wellness, presented by the Canadian Mental Health Association-Sudbury-Manitoulin. Leading the workshop were (Ieft to right): Christophe Coulombe, health promoter, CMHA-Sudbury/Manitoulin; Seija Korpela, Director, Glenn Crombie Centre, Cambrian College; Brian Lobban, Dean, Trades Training, Cambrian College; Natalie Gauvin, Manager, Quality and Strategic Engagement, CMHA-Sudbury/Manitoulin; Gilles Brideau, Counsellor, Cambrian College.

Each year, one in five people in Canada experiences a mental illness or mental health issue, but five in five of us — that’s all people — have mental health, and tradespeople are no exception.

To prepare future tradespeople, Cambrian College, in collaboration with the Canadian Mental Health Association – Sudbury/Manitoulin, has introduced a new series of workshops on mental health and mental illness to students in Cambrian College’s trades programs. The first session took place Thursday, Jan. 18, in the Koski Centre of Cambrian’s main campus in Sudbury.

“Just as your life and circumstances continually change, so do your moods and thoughts, and your sense of well-being,” said Christophe Coulombe, Canadian Mental Health Association – Sudbury/Manitoulin Health Promoter. 

“It's important to find balance in your life over time and in a range of situations. It's natural to feel off balance at times: for example, sad, worried, scared, or suspicious. But these kinds of feelings may become a problem if they get in the way of your daily life over a long period. More than one in two people (52 per cent) struggling with their mental health aren’t getting the help they need. The workshop session will provide students tools, resources, and supports to stay well.”

The focus of this workshop series is for trades students to understand mental health and well-being with emphasis on stigma, depression, anxiety and substance use.

“Careers in trades and technology are very rewarding but can also be quite stressful given the environments people may be working in, the potential hazards and tight deadlines, so it’s only natural tradespeople will carry a certain amount of stress,” said Gilles Brideau, a counsellor in Cambrian’s Glenn Crombie Centre for Accessibility, Counselling and Wellness. 

“There is this stereotype that tradespeople have a gruff exterior, bury their feelings, and just get on with the job, but stress can wear on them too. This training is letting our students know it is okay to feel stressed, but the key is to deal with it effectively before it overwhelms you.”

This session on mental health for trades students is made possible through the support of the Centre for Innovation in Campus Mental Health.



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