Written by

Hansika Khokhar


A Chapter of Jack.org at the University of Windsor

Published On: Tue, Dec 13th, 2022, 12:08PMLast Updated: Tue, Dec 13th, 2022, 12:08PM5 min read
By Published On: Tue, Dec 13th, 2022, 12:08PMLast Updated: Tue, Dec 13th, 2022, 12:08PM5 min read

The University of Windsor prioritizes mental health for all its students and faculty members. It is now an active chapter in the Jack Organization. 

Jack.org is a Canadian charity organization training and empowering young leaders to revolutionize mental health. It aims to work with young people to teach them about mental health and how to look after others’ mental health.  

“1/7 youth in Canada report having suicidal thoughts. This is the leading health-related cause of death for young people in Canada. Canada has the 3rd highest rate of youth suicide in the industrial world. Though this fact underscores a state of emergency, it says nothing about the millions of young people across the country who are struggling with their mental health without reporting suicidal ideation. This is the health crisis of this generation and is the epidemic around which we have built our mission: to revolutionize mental health. We are Jack.org and, together, we have work to do,” claims the organization when explaining its cause and approach.  

Jack.org wishes to create youth leaders who speak for themselves and learn to cope with the obstacles they face in life. It works through three recognized programs: Jack Talks, Jack Chapters, and Jack Summits. 

What is Jack Talk? 

Jack Talk encourages the youth to deliver presentations for the youth. These young people are trained speakers with proper mental health education knowledge. Through their presentation, they share their own personal experience with mental health education to inspire, engage, and educate the youth to look for their mental health. There are four options for an individual to book a Jack Talk for themselves- Livestream Talk, In-person Talk, Pre-recorder Talk, and Personal Talk. For more information about which talk is best suited for you and to book a talk, check the Jack.org website.  

What is a Jack Chapter? 

Jack Chapters include the high schools, colleges, and university-level students who work in their community to promote mental health. The youth that is part of these chapters figure out the problems they want to tackle in their community and work year-round to educate and empower other youth in their community and create awareness. 

“The University of Windsor chapter is currently active and working on ending the silence around mental health”, says Amanda Leraci, a volunteer at Jack.org. 

“I have been a part of Jack.org since high school and continue to work in university to break down stigmas related to mental health,” said Malika Nguyen, events coordinator at the Jack.org chapter of UOFW.   

These chapters are youth-led, and one can easily find a chapter fit for themselves. These youth leaders are mentored by Jack.org where they go through proper training to be members and mental health advocates. To start a chapter at Jack.org and become a youth leader, reach out to Jack.org on their website where all necessary information has been mentioned.  

What are Jack Summits? 

Jack Summits are large youth-led gatherings to educate and empower the youth on the topic of mental health. The chapters may plan to also host a Local Jack Summit in their community to talk about specific topics. These conferences inspire the youth with real, actionable strategies for the mental health revolution. Jack Summits is held at national, regional, and local levels. You can visit their website to know when the next Jack Summit is happening and where it will be. 

“I was a participant at the Jack.org Summit that was held at the University of Windsor, while I was in high school. It was an eye-opening experience for me, so I decided to be a part of the UOFW chapter in my first year. I started as a general member, was promoted to being a secretary, and now I am the Vice-President,” said Lindsey Renauf, Vice President, Jack.org UOFW Chapter). 

A chapter of Jack.org at the University of Windsor

On Wednesday, 7th December, Jack.org UOFW Chapter organized an event in the CAW. This event was a fundraiser that aimed at promoting mental health, especially on exam days by bringing in the three therapy dogs. These therapy dogs were from St.John’s Ambulance, an international organization that aims to teach and provide first aid and emergency services.

(Amanda and Lindsey, Jack.org UOFW team)

“I reached out to St. John’s Ambulance to bring in their therapy dogs. I have been related to them since high school. “They have volunteers to greet and educate people on emergency situations and also provide resources,” said Nguyen.  

“Students should take time to relax and care for their mental health, especially during exam time. So, I planned to bring therapy dogs for students to come and pet them. This would make them happy and give them a break from all the stress. Jack.org encourages the youth to reach out to them,” added Nguyen.  

Jack.org Chapter of UOFW provides care packages to students every year, but this time they introduced the concept of therapy dogs.  

(A message from Nguyen, the Events Coordinator at Jack.org UWindsor)

“We have 6-7 executive members in our team along with a general member committee. Every year, we open applications for both, through our social media. Anyone is welcome to apply and no prior experience is needed. We require genuine people who care about mental health and are motivated to bring a change,” said Renauf.

(Renauf, Vice President of Jack.org UWindsor)

Jack.org UOFW Chapter aims to create an impact that shall last long. The past few events organized by Jack.org at the university include Smashing Pumpkins, DIY Stress Ball, Movie Night, and Kindness Coffee.

Follow Jack.org Uwindsor on Instagram to get all the information about their events and organization. Reach out to them through social media if you wish to become a part of Jack.org Uwindsor. 

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About Hansika Khokhar

Life is meaningful when your work can be valuable to others and yourself, so make the most of it!