Mental Health – HS/Univ/College

Mental Health Presentation for High School/University/College

“I found my purpose beyond illness. That’s when transformation began and healing happened. Whether you suffer or support a loved one, I want to help you find your purpose. It all begins with hope and positive change.”

Post-pandemic, there is fear and uncertainty, especially for our students who just lived through the traumatic COVID-19 pandemic. Created to be together, they were torn apart from extended family, from their peers, and their teachers. We were created to be together. Never before has talking about mental health, and taking action to ensure our mental health is a top priority, been this important. It’s time to have the talk. 

Fear and silence pervade our hallways. Kids are afraid to speak up. I saw it and felt it as a student. I see it now as an educator. Silence leads to suffering. It is imperative that we encourage our youth to speak up when they are struggling. Healing does happen. I lived it, I proved it, I now share my story. I lived a lie for years and it made my road to recovery a lot more difficult. My story of hope and healing is one that resonates with students and their educators. One can heal from severe illness and make a difference.

I am a mental illness advocate, survivor, author, motivational speaker & teacher. Since 2013, I have had the wonderful opportunity of speaking to students throughout Ontario about my story of hope, resilience & healing. I found purpose through writing my memoir and sharing my story. Healing DOES happen. We can speak to students, time and time again, about mental health and wellness, and how to overcome stigma, but when a survivor shares their own life experience, the impact is profound. Compassion, acceptance, and empathy build, and attitudes change forever. We all have a story to share. I now share mine.

“I am not the illness. I have an illness. SEE THE PERSON, not the illness.”

-Chris Nihmey

Preparatory/Follow-Up & Pertinent Details

This DOCUMENT outlines activities that your school & school community can implement prior to, and following my visit, to ensure that my message is well received, understood, and reinforced. I provide staff with several documents which include mental health links, resources, effective strategies & ideas, and several ways that teachers/parents can educate their students and children at home to create awareness, understanding, and compassion for those who struggle. Included are steps teachers/parents can take to receive direction and treatment for their own ailments. Each listener, upon request, will receive a bookmark that links to my website. On there are mental health links & resources, and a contact page where I can always be reached. Help is always available, prior to, and following my talk. Never hesitate to reach out. PREVENTION IS EARLY INTERVENTION. It is most definitely the key to pro-action.

Here is a QUESTIONNAIRE that can be distributed following my visit. It is a chance for students to reflect on my messages. Questions can be used for any follow-up activities, or discussion prior to my visit. Classroom activities tied to mental health and wellness are always encouraged to continue the conversation. You can also review my “goals” on this page.

Time for Presentation: 1 hour (+/- 5 min.) Virtual talks are also available.

Presentation Fee: $500 for one presentation, $600 for two, $700 for three.

Travelling to your city: I would love to visit. There will be reasonable travelling expenses needed for trips that require 2 or more hours of driving. Virtual talks are also available.

If you are interested in a visit, please click on the “Reserve Your Presentation Now” button. This will take you to my “Contact Chris” page. Thank you.

Creating Mental Health Awareness

Since 2013, I have hosted over 250 presentations at schools and organizations about my battle with mental illness and finding hope, purpose, and healing in my life. I would love to come out to your school or university/college to present. VIRTUAL TALKS are also available.

My goals:

  • Educating and understanding mental illness & mental health (we are all affected)
  • Speaking up EARLY and often to get help (PREVENTION IS EARLY INTERVENTION)
  • Building on our mental, physical, spiritual, emotional & social health
  • The dangers of self-medication and self-harming
  • The dangers of stigma and how to eliminate all types of bullying in our schools and community
  • Saying all the right things – how to talk effectively about suicide with our youth
  • The utmost importance of loving support – listening, acceptance compassion & empathy
  • Inspiring hope, faith, purpose, resilience, and healing (believing that healing DOES happen!)

We are all responsible for our school and the people within it, especially those suffering from sickness, bullying, abuse or neglect, or lacking loving support. This leads to suffering and, in some instances, suicide. Taking your life is NEVER a choice, but a decision impacted by circumstances in and around us (illness, addiction, abandonment, extreme bullying, etc.). Reaching out to someone IS a choice, but if we choose not to eliminate the fear and shame that accompanies illness, this tragic trend will continue. We must encourage loved ones to safely step forward and share their stories without judgement and prejudice. We must give them hope. They are NOT alone. Every life matters.

If you are interested in a visit, please click on the “Reserve Your Presentation Now” button. This will take you to my “Contact Chris” page. Thank you.

 

Testimonials

We are indebted to you Chris Nihmey for your ongoing contributions on our OCSB Mental Health journey. Sincere gratitude for your leadership in OCSB and beyond.

Denise Andre

OCSB Director, 2018

Chris Nihmey is a gifted speaker, animated presenter, and passionate educator. Chris has a wonderful command of an audience. His message is both necessary and timely. His material is authentic; not just well researched, but also personally lived. In no way threatening, but in every way important and relevant, every school, professional business and any institutions working to improve social-emotional learning and development must hear Chris Nihmey’s presentation. Positive responses can’t help but be the result. Chris has a true calling to deliver this critical message about mental health. His connection to faith woven into his presentation is not artificial or contrived. He speaks to the heart from the heart!

Ann Louise Revells

Principal, OCSB, Ottawa

I can’t THANK YOU enough. It was a fantastic day and event … and having you as a part of it means so much. I think it was obvious from the students in the audience and their attentiveness and interest. WOW! I mean it was Friday afternoon before a long weekend and you couldn’t hear a pin drop. That says so much! I just wish we had more time because the students really had such an interest. You are so inspiring and your story has touched so many lives.

Kelly Scrim

Teacher, Ottawa

Chris recently came to Longue Sault PS to speak to my staff about his journey. He hit it out of the ballpark … wow! My staff were blown away by his story and message which contained useful, research based information which can be used to support all public education stakeholders. I highly recommend Chris Nihmey as a professional speaker for any organization interested in increasing their capacity to properly support mental health in their workplace.

Kieran Kennedy

Principal, Upper Canada District School Board

Thank you again for your wonderful, energetic, empowering and solutions-oriented presentation! I wish you every success expanding your clientele and taking your presentation and message to new heights!

Shannon Parsons

Ottawa SALUS Community Mental Health Services