Online community makes mental health support accessible 24/7
Up and running in Ontario for more than a year, bigwhitewall.ca – a monitored peer-to-peer mental health support service — has enabled over 20,000 members to get the help they need, when and where they need it. Big White Wall was recently featured on CBC’s The National, including a heart-felt interview with member, Casandra Saumur-Flaro, who finds the online solution helpful in coping with anxiety. “I think I was just really sad, and I needed someone to talk to, someone to relate to. It’s nice to talk to people,” says Saumur-Flaro.
Timely access to mental health care remains a challenge for many Ontarians. The online community helps shatter the solitude and stigma often felt by those suffering from mental health conditions, making mental health care accessible 24/7 even when there is a waiting list for care. Mental health solutions available to Ontarians are often not well publicised, with limited awareness by those who would benefit from them most.
Big White Wall is currently available through a partnership between UK-based Big White Wall, OTN, and the Ministry of Health, the site is free, anonymous, and offers immediate online assistance to people struggling with mild to moderate anxiety and depression. Trained counsellors, or “Wall Guides,” ensure the site remains a safe, supportive community, and monitor activity, available to identify someone in real crisis and assist in getting them the help they need.