Sudbury Catholic District School Board

Sudbury Catholic District School Board Supports HEADSTRONG: Youth Mental Health Summit

The Sudbury Catholic District School Board is pleased to join students from Sudbury, Espanola and Manitoulin Island for HEADSTRONG, an evidence-based anti-stigma initiative that inspires students to Be Brave, Reach Out and Speak Up about mental health. The summit will occur on Tuesday, October 24, 2023, from 8:30 am to 3:00 pm at Cambrian College. 

This day-long conference will bring together approximately 140 Secondary students from the Sudbury Catholic District School Board, Rainbow District School Board, Conseil scolaire public du Grand Nord de l’Ontario, and Conseil scolaire catholique du Nouvel-Ontario.

Spearheaded by the Mental Health Commission of Canada, the HEADSTRONG movement educates youth ages 12 to 18 to recognize the signs of mental health problems and to help reduce the associated stigma. 

“Mental health and well-being is a priority for the Sudbury Catholic District School Board,” says Director of Education, Joanne Bénard. “Working with our co-terminous boards to host HEADSTRONG further supports our ongoing commitment to nurture students by fostering their mental, physical, social, and emotional well-being. Through this experience, HEADSTRONG will provide summit attendees with the essential tools, knowledge, and confidence to confront mental health stigmas respectfully and promote mental health and wellness within their school and surrounding community. We want to thank the support of our sponsors, including Cambrian College, Lions Club, Future North, and the Greater Sudbury Police Services, who have charitably contributed to the success of this upcoming event.”

At the summit, students will have the unique opportunity to listen to speakers with lived experiences, engage in stigma-busting activities, gain insights into available community services, and devise action plans to implement positive change upon returning to their respective schools. 

“The Board recognizes the importance of erasing stigmas and cultivating a culture of hope. Though this is a one-day conference, the learning it will provide is meaningful for years to come.” Say’s Tasha Breau, a registered Psychotherapist at the Sudbury Catholic District School Board and lead organizer of this year’s HEADSTONG summit. “We are thrilled to see how this year’s summit will educate our students, strengthen our communities, and transform how we can further support mental health and wellness in our schools.” 

HEADSTRONG Summit Agenda

Tuesday, October 24, 2023

Cambrian College

8:30 am to 9:00 am   Registration
9:00 am to 9:30 am   Introduction/Welcome
9:30 am to 9:55 am   Keynote Address: Gabe Parent
9:55 am to 10:10 am   Break
10:10 am to 10:35 am   Keynote Address: Katlyn Kotila
10:40 am to 11:10 am   Breakout Room Activities
11:15 pm to 12:15 pmNote: Best time for media interviews   Lunch/Resource Fair
12:15 pm to 12:45 pm   Prize Draw/Speaker Panel Introductions
12:45 pm to 1:45 pm   Panel discussion with guest speakers
2:00 pm to 2:25 pm   Action planning breakout activity
2:30 pm to 2:45 pm   Youth Presentations
2:30 pm to 3:00 pm   Wrap-up

About Keynote Speakers: 

The first keynote address will be delivered by Gabe Parent. Gabe is a passionate mental health advocate with a bachelor’s degree in social work. Gabe’s career journey has included roles as a Youth net/Reseau Ado facilitator and as a healthcare worker, providing care to seniors and youth. Gabe identifies as part of the LGBTQ2S+ community and works to be proactively inclusive of all individuals. In addition to empowering youth to follow their dreams, Gabe believes in the value of well-being for all, from the youngest to the oldest members of the community. 

Students will also hear from Katlyn Kotila, a passionate public speaker and community leader from Sudbury, Ontario. She is the Co-Founder of the Northern Ontario Pride Connection, a non-profit organization aimed at supporting and empowering the 2SLGBTQ+ community across northern Ontario. At the age of 14, she lost a close friend to death by suicide, a moment that would go on to change her life forever. Since then, she has spent her career advocating for improved mental health services and speaking to audiences across North America about her experiences as a suicide-loss survivor.

HEADSTRONG – Save the Date Poster


Join Sudbury Catholic Schools at our upcoming Elementary/Secondary Open Houses!

Sudbury Catholic Schools are excited to be hosting Virtual Open Houses, starting January 12th! We encourage students to come experience our education, ask questions, and learn about the exciting opportunities available at Sudbury Catholic Schools!

*Please Note: You may be required to register beforehand to attend a live event. Go to the individual school website to learn more and sign up!


St. Charles College

Open House Date: Wednesday, Jan. 12th

Marymount Academy

Open House Date: Thursday, Jan. 13th, 6:30PM

St. Benedict C.S.S

Open House Date: Wednesday, Jan. 19th, 6:30PM

Bishop Alexander Carter

Open House Date: Thursday, Jan. 20, 6PM

Storwell Foster Children Bursary Program

Sudbury Catholic District School Board is pleased to introduce students to Storwell, in support of their Foster Children Bursary Program.

Storewell offers an annual bursary of $2,000 in support of foster children to help them attend post-secondary schools and to offer a hand up as they make their way forward in life.

For details about the program and to complete an application, please visit the StorWell Bursary Application Webpage.

*Please Note: Applications for the 2021 program year are due on or before December 31, 2021.

StorWell Foster Children Bursary Program

Poster download

Grade 9 Students Participate in Virtual Take Our Kids to Work Event

Launched in 1994 by The Learning Partnership, Take Our Kids to Work Day is an experiential learning opportunity for Grade 9 students across Canada offering them the chance to see the world of work firsthand, explore a variety of careers and sectors, and look at what skills are important to thrive in the world of work. The goal is to ignite students’ curiosity and open the door for them to see what is possible for their future.

On Tuesday, November 3rd, 2021, Grade 9 students had access to both pre-recorded and live virtual content to create an exciting learning experience. Over 200 Sudbury Catholic students participated in the event facilitated by consultant Christina Raso.

Students learned the importance of managing their online reputation and understanding that the internet is a public place and anything posted online is likely to exist forever.  A positive online reputation can be advantageous and will likely be seen by future employees so students need to be careful about what they share and how it will be perceived.  Students then listened to an inspiring message of purpose and belonging by Sam Effah, RBC Olympian. Watch the video at : Take Our Kids to Work 2021: You Belong Here  Following, students  joined a live Q and A session on Diversity in the Skilled Trades sponsored by Toronto Hydro. The day ended with  sessions hosted by industry experts in the area of innovation & entrepreneurship, healthcare and technology & finance.

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