Almost half of Ontario youth miss school because of anxiety, study suggests.

At five years old, Shannon Nagy told her mother she wanted to die. In Grade 6, she missed almost the entire school year because more often than not, she couldn’t get out of bed. Nagy, now 20, was diagnosed with anxiety, depression, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and borderline personality disorder and was never able to finish high school. She spent most of her childhood immersed in a mental health care system that she said “did more harm than good.” Her struggle to get help and the impact that struggle had on her education is a trend captured in a new…

Read More

Despite funding boost, advocates say Canada has a mental health crisis.

Frustrations over what some advocates are calling cutbacks to Afrocentric mental health services in Toronto came to a head last week in a town hall meeting in Scarborough. One by one, parents of Black youth stepped up to the microphone to share their experiences and voice their concerns over the lack of funding for programs. “We heard from a parent who spoke about basically having to refuse to leave the hospital because they were treating her 21-year-old son as just an angry Black man,” recalls Janelle Skerritt, a Black mental health advocate who moderated the town hall. “But she kept…

Read More

UBC president Santa Ono opens up about his struggle with mental health.

University of British Columbia’s president opened up for the first time Tuesday about his struggle with mental health and how he twice tried to take his own life. Santa Ono spoke at the Healthy Minds: Healthy Campuses Summit and highlighted UBC’s commitment to providing mental health support to students, faculty, and staff. He said he decided to share his own struggle with depression in hopes people who are experiencing mental health issues would feel less alone. About one in seven young people in B.C. will experience mental health illness at some point, according to the Canadian Mental Health Association, the…

Read More

Mentally ill or ill-equipped? Anxiety top issue in schools, says guidance counsellor

Are more children suffering from anxiety disorders, or are doctors too quick to write a prescription? It’s a tough subject, but one that guidance counsellor Boyd Perry does not shy away from. Perry, who is also vice-president of the Newfoundland and Labrador Counsellors and Psychologists Association, said anxiety is the number one issue seen by guidance counsellors in schools across Newfoundland and Labrador. “What we see most as counsellors right through the province is an increase in a child’s inability to deal with the stressors in their lives,” he said. According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, between 10 and 20 per cent…

Read More