By Savannah Lewis
As the semester continues, it is easy for students to forget about their health, both physically and mentally. School, extracurricular activities and work can make it feel impossible to take the time that students need to care for themselves. To help combat the lack of self-care that students may fall into the habit of, Health and Wellness Services has added two new opportunities for students to take advantage of. Both of the new services address the need for students to care for their mental health and offer quick access addressing and relieving stress.
The first new service students can utilize is called Cleveland State University Reach Out app. Denise Keary, Health and Wellness coordinator, explained that this app was created by Lakeland Community College for their students to utilize for suicide prevention and awareness. Once it was released, they allowed other Ohio schools, including Cleveland State, to take advantage of the tool for their own students.
“It is a practical way to get help for somebody or to get help for yourself. It’s a good way to get information and you can even put your own contacts in here,” Keary discussed.
The app has different tabs that offer resources for suicide prevention, from hotlines to a list of apps that can help an individual cope with stress and depression. The app also provides users information of Title IX and how to report sexual assault cases on campus.
The app has a variety of sources for students in different communities to reach out to, such as veteran hotlines, Trevor Text for LGBTQ students and resources for people who may be battling with addiction or drug use.
Keary stated that in order to help release the app, different student leaders such as resident assistants, peer educators and students involved with the Student Government Association were taught how to use the app.
“They have all gone through the download and the different tabs to understand what they mean. So they can talk to students right now,” Keary explained.
Keary also stated that in order for students to have help getting acclimated to the app, Health and Wellness Services will have tables set up in the Berkman Hall Atrium or the Student Center innerlink throughout the month of February.
“On Tuesdays and Thursdays there will be students that can help you understand this download. And there is an incentive! If you download the app, you can put your name in a raffle for an Amazon gift card. People will have two chances a week to win,” Keary said.
Keary explained that Cleveland State saw a need for a tool that could help students have access to lifesaving information and was excited about this app’s ability to reach a wide audience.
“We needed to figure out a way to reach as many students as possible because we know that our resources on campus are stretched,” Keary said. “This is a great way for students to answer any questions they have or access any help they need for themselves or someone else.”
Along with the app, the Peer Education Program has opened a self-care room this semester. It is located in Rhodes Tower room 1240 and is available for student use upon request.
“This room is a place for students to take a vacation for 30 minutes,” Keary explained. “The room offers a variety of tools for students to utilize in order to relax, including a yoga mat, aromatherapy and speakers to play calming sounds and music.”
Keary explained that she felt it was important for students to address the stress they might be feeling and to handle it as soon as possible.
“We want to create that awareness to say it’s okay to take care of your stress right now. Take the time to re-energize. Take the time to figure out strategies to relieve stress so you don’t get to that point,” she stated. Students can email VikingPeerEdCtr@gmail.com to book the room.