Wellness on University Campuses
When I think about mental health and wellness on university campuses, I automatically think about the lack of relevant resources available. I think about how long the wait is to see a counsellor, wellness activities that conflict with my class schedule, and academic stress that reduces my time for wellness strategies.
As a university student about to graduate, much of my time has been spent finding ways to clear my head when school gets too tough. I think somewhere along the extensive list of techniques and strategies for mental wellness preached by university officials, a little memory of their past academic life is lost. Eating healthy and exercising regularly is a lot harder when you have three essays due the next week.
We as students are constantly bombarded with a plethora of ‘subtle’ messages that tell us that working hard and getting good grades are the key to success. When the pressures of balancing academic and personal life become too much, many students experience a decline in mental health.
If anyone really understands the stress of student life, it’s the students themselves.
BeChange connects with the people who understand what we, as students, need. It is a crowdfunding platform that is dedicated to collaborating with the youth who know what changes they want to see. BeChange partners with youth, and helps them develop and launch their wellness initiatives into the world for others in the community to benefit from.
I believe that this is the kind of platform that has been missing from our communities. Students have never really had a say in the kind of resources that promote mental wellbeing. We have had the opportunities to suggest, vote, or take a survey. But we have never had the chance to indulge in the design process that creates a public tool.
A platform like BeChange gives students the opportunities to turn their ideas into realities. It gives them the ability to take their experiences and create a tool that can help others around them.
I believe this is what we need. More resources for youth, developed by youth. Putting the power in the hands of young individuals creates an outlet that has never been explored before!