Friday, September 28, 2012

The Stand Up Kid

Yesterday, we blogged about the pressures of being a student and how it can affect you through your years in school.

I came across this video today on the Canadian Mental Health Association's - Peterborough Branch Facebook Page, and I had to share. 

If we continue to raise the stigma of mental health and depression in our schools, we would be able to help so many more students.

Share this blog post with everyone you know, and you're helping to take a stand.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Student Pressure

One of the most trying times in a person's life is the school years.  Whether it be high school or college, university or adult education. 

  • The pressure of getting the grade.  "I need to get that A in Communications to keep my scholarship"

  • Peer pressure to do drugs, drink, or act in a certain manner.  "All my friends are smoking up, and keep asking me to as well, but I don't want to!"

  • Exams.  Study, study, study.  Do you feel like that's all you do, and it's not going anywhere for you?

  • Sexual orientation.  "I"m gay, but no one knows, and I'm scared"

  • Financial problems due to the economy. "I can barely afford tuition let alone food"

  • Bullying.  "Everyone hates me because I don't look and act like they do"

  • Homesick for friends and family if you're away at school.  "I miss my parents, and my best friends who are at another school all together without me.

  • Issues with roomates, and dorms.  "My roomates are just horrible to deal with, they don't clean anything and are rude and inconsiderant people"

  • Chosing a Major.  "What if I choose the wrong Major and I can't get a job after!"

There are SO many issues that come up during the school era of your life. Do any of the above comments or phrases sound like something you've heard yourself say or think?

I remember when I was away at college, being homesick because of being in a long-distance relationship caused me to go home nearly every weekend.  I missed out on many weekends at the college, with friends, because I felt like I needed to be home.  Once I let myself branch out to new opportunities, I saw myself really open up with friends and outings.

I was fortunate to have excellent roomates that were great to talk to, with a grade I was unhappy with, with a study problem, a boy, and even to talk about where my degree was going to take me. 

That's not always the case for students, and we want to let you know that you're not alone.  There are volunteers at our centre that are also students, that may be able to relate to what you're experiencing.

If you feel as if you can't talk to anyone at the school, or friends, or even your family, and you're away at school, we're here for you.  Depression can sneak up on even the happiest of person when they're away at college or university, or even if you're still in high school or getting your OSSD through Adult Education.

Be the healthiest student you can be, physically, emotionally, mentally. 


Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Monthly Donations

If you weren't aware, the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region is a Not-For-Profit organization.  This means, that with the assistance of our donors, and community supporters, we are able to continue on with what we do here at the centre.

A great way to suppor the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region, is by becoming a Monthly Donor - especially if making a lump sum donation isn't in your budget.

Some of the benefits to becoming a Monthly Donor include, but are not limited to:
  • Ability to spread out your donations by making smaller contributions over the year.  If you're able to spare $5 a month, you'll donate $60 over the year.  Double that to $10 a month, and you've donated $120 for the year.  If 250 people donated $10 a month, we would raise $30,000 in a year!

  • Smaller gifts make it easier to incorporate into your budget. 

  • Easy initial set up!  You can either contact our office directly to set-up your monthly giving schedule by calling 613-238-1089 x 223 or you can set it up yourself online at

  • Donating will also give you a break on your income tax return.  You'll receive one consolidated receipt from your donations to the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region in preparation for your tax return.

  • Your donation is confidential on our end.  We will never trade, sell, or rent your contact information, or make your personal information available to other organizations.

  • With your donation, you will automatically receive our bi-annual newsletter entitled "On-Call" where you will see what's going on at the Distress Centre, and how your donation has helped us.

  • You'll also receive advanced notice for all upcoming Distress Centre events, such as the delicious Festival of Chocolate!

Thank you for taking the time to consider setting up a monthly donation to the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region!

Monday, September 24, 2012

CTV Morning Live Ottawa Appearance

This morning, I had the pleasure of being live on CTV Morning Live Ottawa, to talk about the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region.  I'm no stranger to the camera, as I've done many appearances for other jobs, and events.  Thank you to CTV Morning Live & Kurt Stoodley for having me on today!

The one thing I had hoped to squeeze in while talking, was that we're a United Way funded charity.  The United Way of Ottawa has been helping us keep our services going for so many years, and we are so grateful.

To watch our interview, you can watch it here!

I hope you're having an excellent day wherever you are, but if you're not, please pick up the phone and call our volunteers at 613-238-3311.  We're here to listen.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Estate Donations

As we age, we start thinking about how to take care of our families after we've passed, and how to leave a little something of ourselves behind with services we've cared about.

When writing your Will, you can request a Charitable Estate Donation to be made on your behalf to the charity of your choosing.  No one ever wants to actually write their Will, but it's very important to make sure your Estate is going where you would want it to go.

Making a Charitable Estate Donation is a way of giving back to your community.  Choosing the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region as your charity of choice, will help keep the centre doing what we do best - helping those in crisis.

You can choose to have a bequest in your Will that a certain amount of dollars, goes towards your charity.  The executor of your WIll will see that this gets done with your Lawyer.

Another option is if you have a life insurance policy, that you can choose to put a percentage of the policy towards your charity of choice.  It can be as little as 1% all the way to 100%.  Donating part or all of your life insurance policy can substantially increase the amount your charity of choice actually gets. 

You can choose to have an RSP go directly to the charity.

There are many options available to you when preparing your Will, and you should always seek out the advice of a professional at a bank, or your lawyer.  Discussing your wishes with either or both of these professionals will ensure that your wishes are fufilled. 

When choosing your charity, ensure that they are a registerd charity.

We hope that you'll consider donating to the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region, when planning you Will.  Our charitable number is 10807 9815 RR0001.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Raising Funds

Does your workplace have a charitable campaign program that gives back to the community?

With the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region being in the not-for-profit sector, we rely on funding from donors, events, partners like the United Way of Ottawa, and the community.

If your workplace doesn't have a charitable campaign program set up, it's quite simple to do!

  • Choose an individual to be the fundraising head.  It should be someone in the office who has the time & organization skills to dedicate to running the program.

  • Decide how you're going to raise funds & set a goal.  Are you going to do a payroll deduction?  Are you going to hold an in office auction of goods & services?  Are you going to hold an event in support of the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region?

  • Promote your fundraising efforts in your office walls, and sub-offices, so that everyone knows what you're doing.  IE: Own a bakery?  Maybe for a month, 50 cents from every cupcake sold can be donated to the Distress Centre. 

  • Promote via your Facebook, Twitter, Blog, and YouTube accounts to spread the word (if applicable)

  • Once you've reached your goal, or time frame, gather all funds, and have your office administrator either write a cheque to the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region, and send it to P.O. Box 3457 Station C, Ottawa, Ontario, K1Y 4J6.  Or, if you prefer, you can submit your donation online at Canada Helps at  Either way, your office then is able to collect a Charitable Tax Receipt for your donation.

  • Watch as your funds directly help the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region, as we keep our phone lines open 24/7 with 'round the clock volunteers.

If you're wanting more information, or would like to inform us about your workplace raising funds for the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region, please give me a shout.  My name is Leslie, and I am the Community Relations Coordinator.  I can be reached at 613-238-1089 x 222 or via email at lscott AT

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

New Blog

Welcome to the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region's new blog!

You've most likely landed on our blog through our website or from a search engine.

You may be asking yourself, what exactly is the Distress Centre of Ottawa  & Region?

We are the people who are here, day or night, 24/7, to answer the calls from those who are reaching out for help. Callers may have simple questions. Or they may be in crisis. Either way, with more than 150 volunteers answering over 37,000 calls a year, we provide an integral, important and vital service in the community.

In short form, we're here to help. 

Maybe you landed on our blog, because you're searching for volunteer work in Ottawa.

We count on our volunteers, who have been trained to answer the calls that come in. 

We provide training, not only for our own volunteers, but for other groups as well, including colleges and universities, social service agencies, businesses, government departments and police staff.  OUr professional trainers, renowed for their expertise and knowledge, have trained on topics as diverse as conflict management, communication skills, stress management, sucicide prevention, crisis intervention and more.

If you're interested in becoming a volunteer for the Distress Centre of Ottawa & Region, your next step is to fill out an application form, which can be found here

Maybe you landed on this page, because you're just looking for more information in general about crisis, suicide, stress management, or other issues. 

You're in luck.  Bookmark our blog, because we'll be updating with information from our professionals once a week.

Oh, did I forget to introduce myself?

My name is Leslie, and I am the Community Relations Coordinator here at the Distress Centres of Ottawa & Region.  Nice to meet you! 

I hope you've gained some knowledge from today's post, and there will be many more to come.