The CIUSSS de l’Estrie – CHUS, the regional healthcare establishment for the Eastern Townships, is reaching out to men in the region to remind them that when it comes to mental health, they are not alone. Faced with growing signs of distress among a group that traditionally has a harder time asking for help, the establishment is encouraging men to remember that they can always call 811 and choose option two to access the Info Social is the psychosocial support line.
While recognizing that the pandemic has been very difficult for the whole population Gaëlle Simon, director of general services with the CIUSSS de l’Estrie – CHUS, referred to a survey carried out in the region last summer as an indication that local men are feeling caught with nowhere to turn. According to Simon, the poll of 400 local men showed that about three out of five feel their life has been negatively impacted by the pandemic, but almost 75 per cent of respondents were unaware of what resources are available to help.
The nature of the challenges faced varies, with some trying to cope with changes in relationships and family dynamics where others take on job losses or depression.
“The message we want to send is that you can call 811 and receive support,” Simon said, explaining that the line connects callers to trained, competent, bilingual professionals who can both respond to situations themselves, and also refer those in need to other services in the region.
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