Through the International Student Support Program, students will be able to access support anonymously and in their own language at any time via a range of platforms including online chat, video and email.
“Today, we find that more and more young people are accessing counselling and advisory services through various digital channels”
“Through the ISSP plan students will be able to receive support and counselling services 24/7, which is especially important when being away from home and studying abroad,” commented guard.me CEO Keith Segal.
The service is part of guard.me’s ongoing keep.me SAFE campaign that focusses on international student wellbeing.
Segal explained that data reveals expenses stemming from psychological problems make up a large proportion of international students’ insurance claims.
With many university counselling services only available during office hours. the ISSP aims to be useful to a generation of digital natives, offering support beyond limited on-campus services, Segal told The PIE News.
In addition, many students may feel more comfortable with a support model that does not require them to talk about personal or sensitive issues face-to-face, particularly in the first instance.
“Today, we find that more and more young people are accessing counselling and advisory services through various digital channels,” echoed Richard Albert, VP international of Employee Support Solutions at Morneau Shepell. “This is why we offer support solutions around the clock through our video counselling, app or by telephone.”
The ISSP will be offered to universities as a plan for the entire international student cohort at a cost of $44 per year per student.
The programme launched last month ahead of this week’s Canada’s Mental Health Awareness week.