How to Make a Referral in a Non-Urgent Situation
- Be prepared to work together with the student.
- Know the resources available and have them easily accessible:
- Personal Counselling x4750 or Online (to make an appointment with a counsellor)
- Student Health Services x3243 (to book an appointment with the mental health nurse or a physician)
Cards for both of these resources are easily accessible by calling either location.
When You’re Talking to the Student About the Referral
- Have a positive attitude and approach the student in a compassionate, kind manner.
- Let them know help is quickly and easily accessible on campus.
- Normalize the use of counselling and let them know they are not alone in their struggle. Many students use these resources.
“I know lots of students who have expressed some of the same concerns you have. They’ve sought help through Personal Counselling and it’s been successful.”
- Validate their concerns and let them know their feelings are understandable.
“Your concerns sound frustrating and seem like they’re causing you a lot of stress. You’re not alone. I can connect you with some help.”
- Let them know the sooner they reach out for help, the sooner they’ll be able to get back to feeling their best.
- Be prepared to make the call with the student and offer them support.
- Set a time for a followup meeting.
After the Referral
- Following up is a key component of the referral process.
- It holds them accountable, especially if they didn’t make the call with you.
- It provides them with something to look forward to.
- When checking in with the student, ask open ended questions.
“How has everything been? I want you to know I’m always here if you need me.”
- If they didn’t follow through with their referral encourage them to try again.
“I know it can be hard to take that first step, but the sooner you do, the sooner you’ll see things starting to get better.”
If the Student Says No
- Be prepared for the student to potentially say no to your referral. It takes time and courage to seek help and the student has to be ready for this major step.
- Accept their decision without judgement.
- If it’s an emergency and life is in danger, contact Campus Security at x3200 or call 911.
“I respect your decision. When you feel ready, I’ll be available to help you.”
- Leave the door open for them to come back to you for more tools and resources.