B.C.’s Minister of Advanced Education Melanie Mark in this undated photo. (B.C. government photo)

B.C.’s Minister of Advanced Education Melanie Mark in this undated photo. (B.C. government photo)

Here2Talk: B.C. launches free counselling service for post-secondary students

Province expedites new mental health app in wake of COVID-19 pandemic

The province has announced free counselling services to all students currently registered in studies at B.C. post-secondary schools, as worries remain high due to the ongoing pandemic.

The new program, called Here2Talk, will be available 24-7 through an app, hotline and online chat. It’s a resource that has been in development for several months, but was expedited as young people face the implications of COVID-19 from losing jobs to changes in their studies.

“With the advent of COVID-19 and the increased stress it puts on students, we doubled down to get students the supports they so desperately need,” Advanced Education Minister Melanie Mark said during a news conference on Thursday (April 16).

This is the second announcement by the province this month related to mental health. Last week, the province announced $5 million for a suite of new programs targeted to youth, Indigenous people and first responders who are struggling through this period of uncertainty.

READ MORE: B.C. unveils $5M for mental health supports during the COVID-19 pandemic

The estimated cost for the program is $1.5 million per year for the next three years. There are roughly 555,000 registered post-secondary students in B.C.

“Now every student can access supports 24-7 without stigma or judgment – and it’s free, because access to mental-health care shouldn’t depend on the size of your bank account,” Mental Health and Addictions Minister Judy Darcy said in a statement.

Students can speak to a counsellor by phone, toll-free at 1-877-857-3397 or direct 604-642-5212. Students calling from outside Canada can dial 1-604-642-5212. Services are currently available in English and French but additional languages will be made available by request.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

mental health

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

An eagle preserve is being planned to be created at the French Creek Estuary. (Michael Briones photo)
Conservation groups to raise funds to create eagle preserve in French Creek estuary

‘It’s crucial to secure these remaining acres so this incredible ecosystem stays intact’

Residents in the Regional District of Nanaimo have raised concerns about indiscriminate use of fireworks. (PQB News file photo)
Residents want random use of fireworks to stop in Regional District of Nanaimo

Petition signed by more than 2,000 people calls for new bylaw

A couple wants the Regional District of Nanaimo to deal with roaming cats that are causing damage to gardens and killing wildlife. (Submitted Photo)
Roaming cats pose problem for Parksville Qualicum Beach area couple

Residents upset with felines damaging gardens, want RDN to take action

Town of Qualicum Beach set to give its proposed financial budget second reading. (PQB News file photo)
Qualicum Beach continues work on financial plan

Staff recommends budget be given second reading

Chris and Cheryl Cote run the Oceanside Christmas Wishes and help a minimum of 10 low-income families every year, from gifts to groceries and more. (Facebook photo)
Christmas Wishes group offers boost for low-income families in Parksville Qualicum Beach

‘We want to cover everything so it’s not just about the gifts’

A snow moon rises over Mt. Cheam in Chilliwack on Feb. 8, 2020. Friday, Dec. 11, 2020 is Mountain Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Dec. 6 to 12

Mountain Day, Dewey Decimal System Day and Lard Day are all coming up this week

Robert Riley Saunders. (File)
First Nations Leadership Council demands justice for victims of B.C. social worker

Union of BC Indian Chiefs calls actions of Robert Saunders ‘nothing short of complete depravity’

Demonstrators, organized by the Public Fishery Alliance, outside the downtown Vancouver offices of Fisheries and Oceans Canada July 6 demand the marking of all hatchery chinook to allow for a sustainable public fishery while wild stocks recover. (Public Fishery Alliance Facebook photo)
Angry B.C. anglers see petition tabled in House of Commons

Salmon fishers demand better access to the healthy stocks in the public fishery

(Hotel Zed/Flytographer)
B.C. hotel grants couple 18 years of free stays after making baby on Valentines Day

Hotel Zed has announced a Kelowna couple has received free Valentines Day stays for next 18 years

Farmers raise slogans during a protest on a highway at the Delhi-Haryana state border, India, Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rejected the diplomatic scolding Canada’s envoy to India received on Friday for his recent comments in support of protesting Indian farmers. Tens of thousands of farmers have descended upon the borders of New Delhi to protest new farming laws that they say will open them to corporate exploitation. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Manish Swarup
Trudeau brushes off India’s criticism for standing with farmers in anti-Modi protests

The High Commission of India in Ottawa had no comment when contacted Friday

Montreal Alouettes’ Michael Sam is set to make his pro football debut as he warms up before the first half of a CFL game against the Ottawa Redblacks in Ottawa on Friday, Aug. 7, 2015. Sam became the first publicly gay player to be drafted in the NFL. He signed with the Montreal Alouettes after being released by St. Louis, but abruptly left after playing one game. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Study finds Canada a ‘laggard’ on homophobia in sports

Among females, 44 per cent of Canadians who’ve come out to teammates reported being victimized

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Nurse Kath Olmstead prepares a shot as the world’s biggest study of a possible COVID-19 vaccine, developed by the National Institutes of Health and Moderna Inc., gets underway Monday, July 27, 2020, in Binghamton, N.Y. U.S. biotech firm Moderna says its vaccine is showing signs of producing lasting immunity to COVID-19, and that it will have as many as many as 125 million doses available by the end of March. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Hans Pennink
Canada orders more COVID vaccines, refines advice on first doses as cases reach 400K

Canada recorded its 300,000th case of COVID-19 on Nov. 16

Most Read