Athletes and staff at SAIT Polytechnic launched their second annual Make Some Noise for Mental Health campaign on Tuesday with a mobile pep rally.

The goal of the initiative is to raise awareness and break the stigmas surrounding mental health issues on campus.

The rally was held over the noon hour to kick off the campaign and over 50 students amped up the noise as they made their way through the school’s hallways and gathering areas.

“The main message is that we want people to know that we want to try to reduce stigmas and promote resources and just let people know that it’s okay if they’re not okay. There’s a lot of amazing support here at SAIT from student counselling to different resources around that we want people to know that it’s okay and if they’re having issues or if they’re thinking that they might potentially have mental health illnesses that it’s okay and we’re all here to support each other and help each other out and they’re not alone,” said Billie Rae Busby, SAIT Trojans Marketing and Communications Coordinator.

Student athletes often focus on physical well-being and organizers of the event believe equal emphasis should be placed on mental well-being as well.

“For us, with the student athletes, we find that we focus on their physical health a lot and maybe not as much on the mental health and that’s just as important to student athletes so we found with our community, by talking to the student athletes, this was something that was really important to them and something that is a hot-topic with everybody and if we can be leaders and try and help out and show support for our student athletes, it’s a win for all of us,” said Busby.

Sara Pauls plays volleyball for SAIT and says her twin brother struggles with mental illness and says it’s important to talk about it.

“You need to talk about it. Never feel like you’re scared to let people know what you are going through or embarrassed because mental health is an issue, it’s a disease, it’s not something that’s you. It’s not something that’s caused by anyone else, it’s a disease and everyone goes through something in their lives and just never be scared to talk about it,” she said.

The whole point of the pep rally is to make so much noise that people complain and organizers say that’s how they will know the message is getting out there.

“We want to get some complaints from people that we’re being so loud, we hope that that’s going to be the way that they’ll get the message that we are here and we want to talk about Make Some Noise for Mental Health,” said Busby.

The mobile pep rally is just one of the events being held on campus this week to encourage conversation and promote resources and support for students.

For more information on the Make Some Noise for Mental Health campaign, click HERE.

Bell Let's Talk Day is on January 27th, for more information, click HERE.