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Asking RUOK in Mental Health Week

A traditional “Aussie” sausage sizzle was part of RUOK Day at Carmel College

MENTAL Health Week was an opportune time for Carmel College, Thornlands, to ask the question RUOK?

The college hosted a special RUOK Day that featured music, artwork, stress ball making, boot camp, yoga, and food, including 500 cupcakes and 500 kilos of sausages donated by a local family.

Staff and students donated a gold coin for a cupcake or sausage sandwich with funds raised going to organisations that helped young people dealing with mental health issues.

Several mental health specialists and organisations were invited to speak to the students about some of the issues young people faced daily.

Carmel College Guidance Counsellor Josh Laidler said the day was about raising awareness of mental health issues amongst students and staff and the wider community.

“It was about inspiring and empowering the students to meaningfully connect with others around them and offer support to others struggling with life,” he said.

Josh said the college decided to host RUOK Day during Mental Health Week as the previous year they felt it had passed without the college capitalising on it.

“RUOK day is a really good opportunity to get young people to speak up if they need assistance or need help with mental health issues,” he said.

He said the day was also a great opportunity for the college community to come together for a really good cause and raise some money for organisations who are helping young people who might be tackling mental health issues.

“It included presentations from some of the groups talking about what needs to be done when someone says no to the question RUOK?

“Giving information to access the right services for not only mental wellbeing but also physical well-being.

“Our students are now well aware of what they need to do if they are not ok or if their friends are not ok.”

Year 11 student Matthew Ziebarth said the day was about helping others realise it was ok not to be ok.

“It’s ok to talk about your feelings and how you are feeling to others,” he said.

Matthew, whose father recently passed away, said he was going through some mental issues of his own this year, but the college community had rallied behind him and helped him in so many ways.

“It’s a really good community and we come together when it really matters to support and help those who need it.

“And days like these really bring us all closer together,” he said.

Brisbane Catholic Education Office

243 Gladstone Road, Dutton Park Q 4102

GPO Box 1201 Brisbane 4001 Australia

Phone: (07) 3033 7000

Fax: (07) 3844 5101