A little over a month ago, Christopher Olson, the Communications & Technology head at Hillcrest High School, was forwarded an email regarding the Dare to Dream grant. This grant is a fund created to support young people with up to $5,000 to put into action for projects that support mental health and wellness in schools and communities across Ontario.
After reading it over, he decided to pitch the idea to me. I was very much interested and so we started to plan, budget, and write our proposal soon after.
After a period of time waiting, we were informed that our submission was successful. We had been awarded $5000 to support mental health and wellness at Hillcrest High School.
Through our project we plan to raise awareness on the issues and stigma surrounding mental illness. Mental illness is an minimized issue that impacts everyone in the world. Whether you suffer from it, a family member or friends does, or a classmate/co-worker does, it will have an impact on your life. Our school and student body has dealt with many mental illness tragedies, so making sure youth and children have a good mental health is crucial to us. We are collaborating with mental health professionals to guarantee that the information and advice we are providing is both safe and accurate. We realize that good mental health is not just the absence of poor mental health, therefore our end goal is to see that our school and community has accurate and real understanding of what mental health is and the consequences of mental illnesses are.
We plan on hosting two big events next school year. The first being a mental health week at the end of September, and the second being events held during the month of November (for Movember). We’ll be focusing on the Mental Health, and Suicide piece.
We have built a strong core group of dedicated students, excited to start working on this project.
We plan to continue updating the blog with our plans and much more!
Jillian Altmann & Christopher Olson - Hillcrest High School