TWC Partners with the Stigma Free Society

Stigma Free Society - Awareness Understanding Acceptance
Stigma Free Zone logo
TWC - Working to End Stigma Around Addition

The Stigma-Free Society is a Registered Canadian Charity. since 2010 that aims to reduce stigma of all kinds, such as addiction, with a focus on mental health. The Charity’s Vision and Mission is to foster programs that cultivate, encourage, and educate diverse communities to be more inclusive and compassionate. Their goal is to create awareness of the various stigmas that exist in the world, develop an understanding of the challenges that numerous people face, and encourage all people to foster acceptance of themselves and others.

For over 10+ years, the Stigma-Free Society has been leading a Stigma-Free Zone School Program where they provide in-person presentations to schools all over British Columbia. They have already reached over 50,000+ students with their message. In light of the pandemic, their programming has now gone virtual and it will now reach even more students.

In March, the Society recognized the need for youth mental health support and put together the Stigma-Free COVID-19 Youth Wellness Toolkit in 15 days. This educational resource received a very positive and encouraging response from youth, families, educators and the media. The Toolkit is an effective and comprehensive educational resource that will help youth in grades 4-6 and 7-12, as well as parents and educators during COVID-19. The Toolkit includes COVID-19 Activity Ideas, COVID-19 Downloadable Educational Resources and a COVID-19 Parent Section, and much more, all in one easy-to-access website.

Their most recent project has been the development of the Virtual Stigma-Free School Program and Student Mental Health Toolkit.

The Virtual Stigma-Free School Program is a replacement for the Society’s in-person School Program. It includes documentary-style videos about mental health and the elimination of stigma, a complete guide for educators, and lesson plans. Classrooms and schools can then invite Stigma-Free Society Staff to conduct Virtual Q&A Session Presentations where Presenters discuss their own story briefly and conduct a Q&A with students about mental health and documentary learnings for up to 30 minutes. The presentations are by donation, but they will gladly offer them complimentary if it is not possible to make a donation. Presentations are unique and valuable because they offer students examples of individuals with lived experience of mental health challenges and stigma, and students can ask questions directly to the Presenters or anonymously.

Here is the webpage that goes into detail about the donation details and levels, registration information and more:

The Student Mental Health Toolkit is a robust and engaging online resource that promotes mental wellness education for youth, while providing resources for educators, school counsellors, and parents/guardians. Schools that receive a Virtual Q&A Session Presentation and are able to donate receive FULL and EXCLUSIVE access to countless members-only resources as a bonus. These resources include Mental Wellness Lesson Plans that align with the B.C. Curriculum Guidelines, Section on Diverse-ability and Inclusion, engaging and educational animated videos and comics, and much more.

David Penny

David Penny is Together We Can's Marketing and Media coordinator. Learn more about him & read his articles here.

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