Bell Let’s Talk donates $225,000 to Université Laval Foundation to support student mental health program

Québec, Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Bell and the Université Laval Foundation today announced a $225,000 contribution from Bell Let’s Talk to support a new program that will help students who experience mental health issues.

Called Mental Health in a University Environment: Understanding and Taking Action, the initiative supports the development of mental health training for frontline members of the university community. The training will help guide staff members in their efforts to assist students in distress and provide them with the help they need. This new mental health program has been designed and is being implemented by the Student Services Office and the Vice-Rector, Human Resources.

“Bell is very pleased to support Université Laval’s new mental health program, which will help students cope without jeopardizing their studies,” said Martine Turcotte, Vice Chair, Québec for Bell. “Most people impacted by mental illness suffer in silence for fear of being judged or rejected because of the continuing stigma. Improving access to mental health care and talking openly about the need for these services are priorities for Bell Let’s Talk.”

Bell’s contribution to the program will also enable the Student Assistance Centre to offer specialized support for students who may have considerable difficulty in controlling their emotions, thoughts and behaviours when under stress.

“These programs will help us to develop a well-informed university community that is able to respond effectively and consistently to students in distress,” explains Henri Hamel, Director of the Université Laval Student Assistance Centre.

“Hypersensitivity to difficult life events can make normal daily existence painful, even unbearable, should crisis situations arise,” added Martine Coulombe, psychologist at the Université Laval Student Assistance Centre, responsible for the development of the student mental health program. “This initiative will provide the tools university staff members need to support students dealing with mental health challenges.”

"Université Laval is a place for research, progress and knowledge sharing. The future of our society is being shaped here. But, essentially, nothing is possible if we overlook the human dimension of our students—the leaders of tomorrow,” said Denis Brière, Rector of Université Laval. “That's why it is vital for us to provide them with a quality teaching and research environment and to support them in every possible way in their endeavour to achieve academic success."

About Bell Let's Talk

The Bell Let’s Talk mental health initiative is built around 4 action pillars – anti-stigma, care and access, research, and workplace best practices. Bell Let’s Talk partners with a growing number of mental health leaders across Canada including Institut universitaire en santé mentale de Montréal, Hôpital Charles-LeMoyne, Montreal Jewish Hospital, the Douglas Mental Health University Institute, La Fondation du Centre hospitalier universitaire de Québec, and Concordia University.

Bell Let’s Talk Day is January 28

The fourth annual Bell Let's Talk Day, set for January 28, 2014, invites Canadians to join the conversation and help end the stigma around mental illness. On Bell Let’s Talk Day, Bell donates 5 cents for every text sent, mobile call, and long distance call made by Bell and Bell Aliant customers, every tweet using #BellLetsTalk, and every Facebook share of the Bell Let's Talk Day image. Bell’s donations are made at no extra charge to Bell Let’s Talk Day participants, though normal long distance or text charges, if any, apply.

To date, Bell has already committed $62,043,289.30 to Canadian mental health based on its original $50 million commitment and participation in Bell Let’s Talk Day since 2011.

To learn more please visit

About the Université Laval Student Assistance Centre

The Université Laval Student Assistance Centre is a sub-unit of the Student Services Office. In joint collaboration with other units of the university, its mandate is to provide direct and indirect assistance for the normal development of students who may experience crisis episodes during the course of their university studies. For more information, please consult (available in French only).

About the Université Laval Foundation

Created in 1966, the Université Laval Foundation has a mandate to organize and carry out fundraising campaigns, and to administer donations. It welcomes the generosity of graduates, friends, organizations and foundations that support teaching and research activities at Université Laval. Over the years, the donations received have helped create 600 or so funds in a broad and diverse group of fields. Among the French university foundations, the Université Laval Foundation ranks first in terms of capitalized funds. For more information, please consult (available in French only).

About Bell
Headquartered in Montréal since 1880, Bell is Canada's largest communications company, providing consumers and business customers with leading TV, wireless, Internet, media, home phone and business communications solutions. Bell Media is Canada's premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio and digital media. Bell is wholly owned by Montréal's BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE). For more information, please visit

Media inquiries:

Henri Hamel
Université Laval Student Assistance Centre

Jacqueline Michelis
Bell Media Relations
1 855 785-1427