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Home / Toronto / News / Canada / It’s Bell Let’s Talk Day! Your voice is needed as we confront the impacts of the COVID crisis on the mental health of Canadians

It’s Bell Let’s Talk Day! Your voice is needed as we confront the impacts of the COVID crisis on the mental health of Canadians


MONTRÉAL, Jan. 28, 2021 — Today is the 11th annual Bell Let’s Talk Day and everyone’s invited to join the conversation to support people living with mental illness while also driving up Bell’s donations to mental health programs just by getting engaged.

“With COVID-19 affecting every aspect of our lives, Canadians everywhere are feeling the impact of the ongoing crisis on their mental health. Now more than ever, every action counts – and we invite you to make lending your voice to the Bell Let’s Talk Day conversation one of the actions you take for mental health today,” said Mary Deacon, Chair of Bell Let’s Talk. “Over the last decade, Canadians have built a mental health movement unlike anything in the world, and together we’ve made a positive difference in countless lives. Let’s keep the momentum going by making Bell Let’s Talk Day 2021 our biggest ever!”

Michael Bublé and Maxim Martin in new Bell Let’s Talk Day videos
This year’s Bell Let’s Talk Day campaign highlights the actions we can all take to support mental health in the face of the COVID crisis. To reinforce the message, singer-songwriter Michael Bublé and comedian Maxim Martin have recorded funny and thoughtful new videos of support – and every view of the videos on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, TikTok, Twitter and YouTube today will count toward Bell’s donations to mental health.

“I’ve admired Bell’s commitment to mental health for years,” said Michael Bublé. “Now as COVID-19 rages across our country, it’s especially vital that we all step up and do our part. Everyone has been impacted by the virus. But if we all get involved, we can lessen the impact of mental illness on our loved ones.”

Take action and drive Bell’s donations
Canadians everywhere can use multiple communications platforms to join in the conversation today. By getting engaged, you directly drive Bell’s ongoing donations to Canadian mental health programs – all at no cost beyond what you may normally pay your service provider for Internet, text or phone access.

On Bell Let’s Talk Day, Bell donates 5 cents to Canadian mental health programs for every applicable text, local or long distance call, tweet or TikTok video using #BellLetsTalk; every Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, TikTok, Twitter and YouTube view of the Bell Let’s Talk Day videos; and every use of the Bell Let’s Talk Facebook frame or Snapchat filter.

Over the first 10 annual Bell Let’s Talk Days, Canadians and people around the world have sent a total of more than 1.1 billion messages of support for mental health – bringing Bell’s total funding commitment up to $113,415,135 so far.

Here are some of the many Bell Let’s Talk Day events taking place today:

In This Together: A Bell Let’s Talk Day Special
Etalk’s Tyrone Edwards and The Social’s Melissa Grelo lead the mental health conversation as hosts of In This Together: A Bell Let’s Talk Day Special, premiering at 7pm ET/PT on CTV, CTV2 and Crave. The special highlights Canadians and their mental health journeys through a year of disruptions and unique challenges.

Crave highlights mental health
Crave’s Mental Health Awareness Collection showcases programming in English and French that explores mental health issues including HBO’s Euphoria, I Know This Much Is True, and I May Destroy You; Crave documentary Rat Park; Canadian documentaries and films such as The Grizzlies; and Bell Let’s Talk Day specials like In This Together: A Bell Let’s Talk Day Special; Awareness, Acceptance & Action; Santé mentale : une note à la fois; and Plus Forts Ensembles.

La santé mentale : une note à la fois
Documentary La santé mentale : une note à la fois follows the stories of musicians Steve Veilleux, Laurence Jalbert and Safia Nolin, and features slam poet David Goudreault. Airing on Canal D, Canal Vie and VRAK, the documentary will also be available at Noovo.ca, vrak.tv, Crave, CanalVie.com and CanalD.com.

La semaine des 4 Julie
Julie Snyder hosts Steve Veilleux and Bell Let’s Talk spokesperson Marie-Soleil Dion to talk about mental health on a Noovo primetime special La semaine des 4 Julie at 9pm ET.

Kids Eat Smart Mental Health Breakfast
More than 2,400 students at junior high schools in Newfoundland and Labrador will receive a healthy breakfast in their classroom today to inspire a discussion about youth mental health.

TIFF mental health programming
TIFF is adding a free Bell Let’s Talk Day collection to the digital TIFF Bell Lightbox. The selection of short films exploring mental health will be available from January 28 to February 4 and includes A Woman’s Block; The Blind Stigma: Mental Health within the Black Community; Point and Line to Plane; and The Weight. TIFF will be hosting a digital conversation January 28 at 12pm ET with writer-director Rebeccah Love joining TIFF programmer Hoda Ali to talk about Love’s film A Woman’s Block and the power of cinema to spark action in mental health. The conversation will be simulcast across TIFF’s Facebook, Twitter and YouTube channels.

Toronto Writers Collective event
Toronto Writers Collective will offer free virtual creative writing workshops with a focus on mental health and well-being. The volunteer-led workshops are open to anyone looking for community and creativity, no writing experience necessary. Workshops take place at 10am, 1:30pm and 7pm ET. Online registration is required and space is limited.

Cleveland Clinic Canada Webinar 
Cleveland Clinic Canada will offer a free webinar to Canadian business leaders at 11am ET with a focus on prioritizing workplace mental health while also discussing the impact COVID-19 is having on the mental health of employees. Hosted by Dr. Cathy (CJ) Campbell, the expert panel will include Cleveland Clinic Canada CEO Mike Kessel, internal medicine physician Dr. Jeff Alfonsi and psychiatrist Dr. Claire Harrigan.

Toronto Rehab and UHN host wellness webinar
Bell Let’s Talk partners Toronto Rehab and University Health Network are hosting a Wellness Webinar for UHN staff at 12pm ET. Let’s Talk Mental Health, Gratitude and You features Cheryl Sutherland, Founder of PleaseNotes Goods, and Toronto Rehab Psychologist Dr. Martha McKay providing insights on the mental health impacts of COVID-19, the importance of self-care and available mental health resources.

Festival d’été de Québec
Le Festival d’été de Québec invites everyone to its Bell Let’s Talk Day virtual events featuring psychologist Marc Pistorio, financial advisor Michel-Olivier Marcoux, yoga teacher Myriam De la Sablonnière as well Catherine Paquin, Mathieu Dufour, Claudia Bouvette and other guests.

Virtual event for Government of Canada employees
The Centre of Expertise on Mental Health in the Workplace, the Canada School of Public Service and the Federal Youth Network will host a virtual event open to all federal employees from 12:30pm to 2:30pm ET. Panelists include Bell Let’s Talk advisor and 2020 Champion of Mental Health Dr. Christopher Mushquash, 2019/2020 Face of Mental Illness Onika Dainty, and Daniel Quan-Watson from Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs.

Patricia Lemoine at Polytechnique Montréal
Friend of Bell Let’s Talk Patricia Lemoine will host a webinar at 12:30pm ET for Polytechnique Montréal students about the day-to-day importance of mental health for those in positions of leadership.

Canadian Armed Forces join the conversation
The CAF will conduct virtual mental health Q&A sessions and a panel discussion between Defence Team members, senior leadership and mental health experts across its social media channels, including Instagram and Facebook. Deputy Minister Jody Thomas and Vice Chief of the Defence Staff LGen Mike Rouleau, DND/CAF mental health co-champions, will host a virtual coffee talk with Defence Team members via Zoom at 12:30pm ET.

Flag raisings will take place at select CAF locations across Canada and internationally, including at CFB Halifax which will livestream its Bell Let’s Talk flag raising at 8am AT. Other CAF regional events include a virtual event at 5th Canadian Division Support Base Gagetown with local guest speakers; CFB Borden’s discussion at 10am ET with retired NHL player and mental health advocate Theo Fleury; Montréal region chaplains are hosting Olympian Sylvie Bernier at 12pm ET for a discussion focused on resiliency and mental health; and Military Family Resource Centre (MFRC) Suffield’s online event at 3pm MT on Maintaining good mental health during COVID-19, a discussion with Veterans and their spouses as well as MFRC’s National Program Manager Ghada Makhlouf and Chief Psychiatrist Dr. Alexandra Heber.

Indigo mental health events
In partnership with Indigo, Claire Zlobin, founder of Life With A Baby and Olivia Scobie, parental mental health counsellor, educator and author of Impossible Parenting, will be hosting a virtual conversation at 1pm ET about changing the culture of unrealistic parenting expectations and creating a new culture of mental health for parents.

Beginning at 5pm ET, parenting author Ann Douglas will be in conversation on @IndigoKids Instagram as she discusses her book Parenting Through The Storm: How to Handle the Highs, the Lows and Everything in Between.

Indigo will also be supporting the Canadian Mental Health Association with a donation of $2 for every copy of Grief & Loss & Love & Sex, Lara Margaret Marjerrison’s powerful story of grappling with her sister’s death, sold in store and on indigo.ca from January 28 to February 28, 2021.

Dr. Joti Samra and the University of Guelph
The University of Guelph is hosting an event at 1:30pm ET for team members with psychological health and safety expert Dr. Joti Samra. Participants will learn strategies and actions they can take to support their own and their colleagues’ mental well-being.

Music NL’s The Show Must Go On
Music NL is hosting virtual event The Show Must Go On for their members from 7 to 8pm NT, featuring singer songwriter Damhnait Doyle speaking about her lived experience alongside representatives from CMHA Newfoundland and Labrador.

CMHA Champlain East virtual round table
Join CMHA Champlain East beginning at 6:30pm ET for a virtual round table conversation on mental health with Executive Director Joanne Ledoux-Moshonas and special guests including Bernadette Clement, Angele D’Alessio, Mitch Dubeau, Chantal Larocque, Melanie Brulee, Ivan Labelle and Stephen Douris.

A Mental Health Talk with Creatives
DJ Starting from Scratch will host a virtual conversation about mental health on Twitch from 7pm to 9pm ET, featuring discussions with Ellie K Borden, Mark Brand and Dillon Casey about how artists, creatives and entrepreneurs can cope with mental health impacts.

La Presse live discussion with Sonia Lupien
Journalist Véronique Lauzon will host a discussion in French about stress management with Sonia Lupien, director of the Centre for Studies on Human Stress at the Institut universitaire en santé mentale de Montréal and professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Montreal at 8pm ET live on lapresse.ca and on La Presse’s Facebook page.

Montréal Canadiens show their support
Canadiens players and coaching staff will participate in Bell Let’s Talk Day on social media, and coaches will sport Bell Let’s Talk pins when the team faces off against the Calgary Flames at 7pm ET.

Notable landmarks to light up blue
The Toronto and Winnipeg signs, BC Place, High Level Bridge in Edmonton, and the Lt. Governor’s Residence in St. John’s will light up blue to mark Bell Let’s Talk Day.

University and college student engagement
The Bell Let’s Talk Campus Campaign will reach more than 200 universities and colleges throughout Canada. This year’s campaign features a digital toolkit to ensure post-secondary institutions can safely engage students across the country. Schools will also screen short films about mental health provided by the Au Contraire Film Festival.

Bell Lets Talk flag raisings
Communities and organizations around the country are showing their support for mental health with Bell Let’s Talk flag raisings, following earlier ceremonies by the Borough of Verdun and the Douglas Foundation in Montréal, RMC Kingston, the Service de police de la Ville de St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Central Memorial Park in Calgary, the Hamilton Bulldogs, the Ottawa Senators, and the cities of St. John’s and Timmins.

Flag raisings scheduled for today in Canada
12 Wing Shearwater; CAMH; Canadian Armed Forces Latvia; Cape Breton Regional Municipality; CFB Halifax; CFB Valcartier; CFB Winnipeg; CFS Alert; the cities of Belleville, Brandon, Brockville, Cambridge Bay, Charlottetown, Churchill, Corner Brook, Cornwall, Dauphin, Dorval, Fredericton, Greater Sudbury, Iqaluit, Joliette, Kingston, La Pêche, Markham, Mississauga, Moncton, Montréal, Niagara Falls, North Bay, Ormstown, Oshawa, Ottawa, Peterborough, Pickering, Québec, Regina, Saint-Donat, Saint John, Sault Ste. Marie, Summerside, Thunder Bay, Toronto, Vaughan, and Whitehorse; Clara Hughes Public School; Council of Yukon First Nations; Direction de la police de Trois-Rivières (virtual); Durham Children’s Aid Foundation; École nationale de police du Québec; Government of New Brunswick; Government of Ontario (Solicitor General’s Office); Halifax Regional Municipality; HMCS Halifax (currently deployed on Operation REASSURANCE); House of Assembly of Newfoundland and Labrador; IUSMM – Fondation de l’Institut universitaire en santé mentale de Montréal (virtual); USMQ – Fondation CERVO; Kitchener Rangers; Le Massif de Charlevoix; Legislative Assembly of Manitoba (Memorial Park); Niagara IceDogs; Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences; Oshawa Generals; Québec Association of Police Directors; RCMP A Division; RCMP B Division; RCMP C Division; RCMP D Division; RCMP E Division; RCMP F Division; RCMP G Division; RCMP H Division; RCMP K Division; RCMP L Division; RCMP National Headquarters; RCMP O Division; RCMP Queens District; Régie intermunicipale de police Richelieu-St-Laurent; Régie intermunicipale de police Thérèse-De Blainville; RMC Saint-Jean; Service de police de la Ville de Blainville; Service de police de la Ville de Granby; Service de police de la Ville de Saint-Eustache; Service de police de Sherbrooke; Service de police de la Ville de Terrebonne; Service de police de la Ville de Lévis; SG 2 Cdn Div Montréal Garrison; SG 2 Cdn Div Saint-Jean Garrison; The Alex Community Health Centre; Toronto Police Service; Toronto Rock; the towns of Hermitage-Sandyville, Huntsville, Portugal Cove-St.Philip’s,Torbay, and Whitby; Ville de Val-d’Or (virtual); William Osler Health System – Brampton Civic Hospital, Etobicoke General Hospital and Peel Memorial Centre for Integrated Health and Wellness; York Regional Police; Yukon Legislative Assembly.

Flag raisings at post-secondary institutions in Canada
Cambrian College; Cégep de Drummondville; Cégep de Granby; Cégep de Jonquière; Cégep de Lévis; Cégep de l’Outaouais; Cégep de Sainte-Foy; Cégep de Saint-Jérôme; Cégep de Valleyfield; Cégep Édouard-Montpetit; Cégep Gérald-Godin; Cégep Heritage; Cégep La Pocatière; Cégep Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu; Collège Ahuntsic; Collège Boréal; Collège communautaire de Campbellton; Collège de Technologie Forestière des Maritimes; Collège Laflèche; College of the Rockies; Collégial du Séminaire de Sherbrooke; Concordia; University of Edmonton; Confederation College; Cumberland College; Grande Prairie Regional College; Humber College; John Abbott College; Justice Institute of British Columbia; Keyano College; King’s University College; Langara College; Marine Institute; Mohawk College; Mount Royal University; Northern College; Olds College; Parkland College; Providence University College; Redeemer University; Saint Paul University; Saskatchewan Institute of Technologies; Saskatchewan Polytechnic; St. Francis Xavier University; Trent University; Université de Montréal; Université de Saint-Boniface; Université du Québec en Abitibi-Témiscamingue; University of British Columbia Okanangan; University of Regina; University of Sudbury; University of the Fraser Valley; University of Waterloo; University of Winnipeg; Vancouver Island University; Yukon University.

About Bell Let’s Talk
The largest-ever corporate commitment to mental health in Canada, Bell Let’s Talk is focused on 4 key action pillars: Anti-stigma, Care and Access, Research and Workplace Leadership. Since its launch in September 2010, Bell Let’s Talk has partnered with more than 1,100 organizations providing mental health supports and services throughout Canada, including hospitals, universities, local community service providers and other care and research organizations.

In March 2020, Bell announced the extension of the Bell Let’s Talk initiative for another 5 years. Including the additional COVID-19 funding, Bell is now targeting a total corporate donation of at least $155 million to Canadian mental health programs. To learn more, please visit Bell.ca/LetsTalk.

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