Bluewater Student Senate Delivers S.O.S.
The first ever "S.O.S. (Support our Students) - Voices + Choices" conference on student mental health and well-being held on May 31, 2012 received an overwhelmingly positive reception from all of those who were involved.
Organized by Bluewater District School Board's Student Senate and the Grey-Bruce Branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association, the event was an opportunity for Bluewater students from grades 7 to 12 to learn about and express their viewpoints on a variety of mental health issues. Some of these included eating disorders, cyber bullying, suicide prevention, homophobia, relationships and anxiety, among others.
Those in attendance at the daylong event at OSCVI and Georgian College (Owen Sound) were inspired by a keynote presentation by youth speaker Matt Tod. Best known as the creator and Executive Director of Leadership Rewired, Tod has helped empower young people to create positive change in all aspects of their lives.
In addition to students, Bluewater staff, trustees and senior administration participated in the conference. Consensus at the end of the day was that the S.O.S. initiative was extremely well organized and an amazing opportunity for students, many of whom left feeling inspired. The possibility of coordinating a similar project for next year is already being considered.
The conference ties in perfectly with the Bluewater District School Board Strategic Plan Priority to "Ensure the well-being of students and staff in a safe supportive environment for teaching, learning and working".