Families and Friends – How to Help

People outside Student Developement Centre

If you are concerned about your daughter/son or have recognized some signs of distress, it’s important to note there are many ways to help.

Listening to what your young adult is experiencing is crucial.

Listening and Talking:

  • Set up a time to talk. Take measures so you won’t be interrupted.
  • Listen attentively to the response and encourage her/him to talk.
“Tell me more about that.”
  • Mention you have noticed changes in her/him and you want to help.

“I’ve noticed you don’t call home as often as you used to.
I miss talking to you. Is everything alright?”
  •  Ask questions that show you care.
“How has everything been going for you lately?
How are you doing in your courses?”
  • Allow time for her/him to tell her/his story.
  • Be non-judgmental and non-blaming.
  • Express concern and validate the concerns rather than focusing on solutions.
  • Give plenty of reassurance and reaffirm their positive attributes.
“This is a tough time, but you’ve made it through tough times in the past. You’ve certainly shown me you have persistence.”
  •  Suggest that challenges or seemingly difficult situations are opportunities to practice problem solving skills – talk about what she/he found helpful in the past.
“What helped you when things were tough like this in the past?”

 Offering Help:

  • Ask if there is anything you can do to help.
  • Encouraging her/him to seek resources available at the university and/or elsewhere, for example:
    • Counselling (x4750)
    • Student Health Services (x3243)
    • 24 hour talk line (1-866-925-5454)
    • Website (for more information)
  • Tell her/him talking to a counsellor, doctor and/or nurse is what many students do whether they have a few or a lot of concerns. Many students say talking with a professional helped when they felt overwhelmed, depressed or worried about a mental health issue they were experiencing.
  • Visit Brock’s More Feet on the Ground website for helpful suggestions including how to start the conversation.

Helping to get connected

Before you close the conversation, give her/him specific information about where she/he can get help.

“You can call x4750 to make an appointment with a
personal counsellor or x3243 to make an appointment with a
mental health nurse or physician.”
  • Be sure to indicate she/he can contact you when she/he needs to.
  • If this is not an emergency situation and you are unsure about what to do call:
    • Debbie MacCulloch x7425
      Mental Health Nurse, Student Health Services

If you are worried this is a crisis situation, call 911. The Campus Security team is here 24 hours a day and can be reached at 905 688 5550 x3200.


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    Student Health Services

    Located in Harrison Hall
    (next to Campus Security)
    Physicians and Mental Health Nurse
    905-688-5550 x3243

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    Personal Counselling

    Located in the Schmon Tower – ST400
    905-688-5550 x3240 (crisis)

    905-688-5550 x4750 (non-crisis/

    appointment booking)


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    Campus Security

    Located in the Kenmore Centre (across from the Walker Complex)
    905-688-5550 x3200 (crisis)
    905-688-5550 x4300 (non-crisis)

Crisis Services
at Brock

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    Brock Campus Security

    905-688-5550 x3200

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    In Case Of Emergency

    Call 911

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    Niagara Distress Centre

    905-688-3711 (support line)

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    Niagara Health System, St. Catharines Hospital

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    Personal Counselling

    905-327-2244 (emergency after hours)

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    24 Hours Post-Secondary Student Hotline (Good 2 Talk)


After Hours Crisis Resources