YMCA of Okanagan Y Mind Program

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In celebration of CMHA Mental Health Week, Genna McCansh, 25, is getting loud about her mental health experience and the programs and resources she used to find a way to manage life’s highs and lows. 

“I had a very poor relationship with my emotions especially anxiety,” said McCansh. “I was under the false assumption that emotions were to be ignored or controlled.” 

After hearing about a Mindfulness Group information session through the Y, Genna, who was already interested in self-improvement, decided to sign up to participate in the program. 

“My group connected as a whole,” McCansh said. “It was incredibly helpful to learn that I wasn’t the only one struggling with stress. I feel like an entirely different person! I honestly feel something fundamental in me changed.”  

As the issue of mental health is catapulted to the forefront of people’s minds this week, if you or someone you know is struggling to cope, community organizations such as the Y, Canadian Mental Health Association and Foundry Kelowna have resources and supports in place to support your journey to an improved quality of life.   

 “Mental Health is a very important issue and can often lead to feelings of isolation,” explained Jan Locke, Manager of Mindfulness Programs for the YMCA of Okanagan. “The Y, along with community partners are working together to ensure we are addressing this need and providing accessible resources to individuals in our community.” 

There are many components to healthy living and mental health is a large contributor.  

“There shouldn’t be such a stigma on improving ourselves and our mental health,” says Genna. “Mental Health is just as important, maybe more important, than physical health.”

If you are experiencing anxiety, worries, or stress on a regular basis, it is important to seek support and resources that can help.  

The YMCA of Okanagan offers programs for youth ages 13-30 that provide a safe, supportive and accepting environment where youth can develop coping skills and connect to others who have had similar experiences.

Learn more about programs offered through the YMCA of Okanagan at ymcaokanagan.ca/MentalHealth