In a recent study, four in five Canadians reported that COVID-19 has already had a negative impact on their mental health.
COVID-19 is a physical health crisis that is also quickly manifesting as a mental health crisis. All Canadians are familiar with the goal of “flattening the curve” of COVID-19. WE is seeking to flatten the curve of mental health issues through early intervention and promotion of well-being. As with our physical healthcare, early intervention will help to prevent overwhelming Canada’s already strained mental healthcare network.
Launched in partnership with the Erika Legacy Foundation and ministries of education across the country, WE Well-being provides free teaching materials, educator training and classroom resources to the more than 7,000 schools in its network across the country. With the potential to reach millions of students annually, the curriculum is designed to improve lifelong well-being and lessen mental health issues among youth through early prevention and promotion strategies. The urgency of this work has increased dramatically, and WE Well-being is working diligently to provide resources for students in both classroom and at-home learning environments.
The WE Well-being program has been developed by leading mental health professionals to build a foundation of awareness, understanding and taking action for self-care and the care of others. Every resource has been updated to address the new realities we face. Those resources include:
Launched on May 4, the podcast series is hosted by WE Well-being ambassador and ally Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, who conducts intimate, soul-lifting interviews and discussions with Canadians about their own journeys and self-care practices. The WE Well-being podcast features conversations with mental health experts, celebrities and thought leaders on a range of topics, including resilience, strength, vulnerability and self-love. This podcast is designed to empower listeners with the tools and information needed to support their own well-being and the well-being of others, both during and after this difficult time. Learn where to find the podcast at WE.org/wellbeing
The WE Well-being Playbook: Taking Care of You During COVID-19
A hands-on guide filled with tools, actions and tactics, the WE Well- being Playbook helps readers nurture their own mental well-being and the well-being of others. Drawing from the best available evidence, it’s cutting-edge science applied in practical ways for everyday use. The playbook has been updated in response to COVID-19 and now includes tips for creating a sense of community and belonging during a time of isolation. WE has made the e-book free for download in order to equip youth, families and communities with the tools to curb anxiety, build resiliency and practise self-care during this challenging time. Download the full e-book at WE.org/wellbeing
WE Well-being K–12 Resources
At the core of WE Well-being is the development of K–12 curriculum resources for students, accompanied by teacher and family resources. Leveraging WE’s network of 7,000 partner schools across the country, WE Well-being’s goal is to empower a generation of young Canadians with lessons on self-care and fostering resilience. WE is developing and deploying resources for each grade at a pace determined by charitable contributions. In addition to the core resources, WE is also building trauma-informed learning resources to help to address the losses and anxiety experienced by students because of COVID-19.
WE Well-being Toolkit for Families
An easy-to-use online toolkit has been designed to equip families with information and tools to support their well-being while at home. The free resources include:
- Activity cards From sleep to nutrition, these cards cover important topics that directly affect positive well-being, complete with discussion questions and ways to take action. Here’s the sleep activity card to get you started.
- Videos Informative and engaging videos to watch with your family about the importance of nurturing your mental well-being.
- Shareable social media posts Support your friends and family online with simple actions they can take for self-care.
- Well-being worksheets Interactive and engaging, each worksheet covers a topic such as helping others, the benefits of physical activity, and how good nutrition supports well-being.
Advertising feature produced by WE. The Globe’s editorial department was not involved.