It’s a well known fact that Indigenous people in Canada are at a greater risk of struggling with mental health issues than the non-Indigenous population.
For anyone experiencing mental illness, simply having someone to talk to can be a life changer. And accessing crisis intervention and counselling in your own language whenever you might need it could save lives.
The Canadian government launched the First Nations and Inuit Hope for Wellness Helpline on October 1 to provide telephone crisis intervention counselling to First Nations and Inuit people.
Counselling is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week in English and French and, on request, in Cree, Ojibway and Inuktitut. Anyone who calls the helpline can also get assistance from counsellors to identify follow-up supports and services.
While a helpline doesn’t get to root causes or heal historical, longstanding wounds among Indigenous people in this country, it can be an important measure to keep someone safe in a crisis.
If you or anyone you know could use support counsellors with the First Nations and Inuit Hope for Wellness Helpline can be reached at 1-855-242-3310.