Student mental health initiative wants to share stories online

Proud to be sharing their stories and spreading awareness of mental health issues are (from left)...
Proud to be sharing their stories and spreading awareness of mental health issues are (from left) Silverline co-ordinator Kasey Miles (22) and storytellers Tess Goldsmith (22), Sophia Taing (20) and Sinead Ford (21). Photo: Peter McIntosh
A student-run initiative  started in a bid  to combat the stigma surrounding  mental health  is sharing real-life stories on its Facebook page.

Silverline Otago aims to combat mental health issues for university students,  and hopes its new online campaign will help students  recognise they are not alone in struggling with their mental health. The volunteer-led organisation was launched last year when students saw a need for mental health issues to be addressed.

Volunteer co-ordinator at the University of Otago and Silverline volunteer Kasey Miles said she could not put into words how incredible the response to the online campaign had been.So far three  stories had been shared on the page, she said.

"Quite often people feel isolated in what they’re going through and our hope is that they will read the stories and not feel as alone.

"We’re hoping it will become normalised to talk about your mental health.

"Our end goal would be that people can talk about mental health just the same as physical health."

The group was hoping to continue the story-sharing campaign indefinitely.

- Emma Perry

 

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