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Rookie Bruin forward shows his support for mental health

A member of the Estevan Bruins has shown his support for mental health initiatives in the southeast region.
Bruin pic
Bruin forward Brady Nicholas chats with Envision Counselling Support Centre resource development worker Tania Hlohovsky-Andrist, while Envision outreach co-ordinator Juli Dzuba and Bruins marketing manager Danny Ewen listen.

A member of the Estevan Bruins has shown his support for mental health initiatives in the southeast region.

Brady Nicholas, a 19-year-old rookie forward on the team, spearheaded the Bruins fundraising efforts for the Movember movement a couple of months ago. He and most of the members of the team grew moustaches for the month of November, with Nicholas doing it as a fundraiser.

He raised $1,000 for the Envision Counselling and Support Centre.

“Mental health is something that affects everybody, either directly or indirectly,” said Nicholas. “I’ve seen it affect family members, friends, fellow teammates and guys on other teams. It felt right to raise a bit of money for something that means a lot for me.”

The final $50 needed to reach the $1,000 mark came in during the final minutes of the month.

Nicholas set up the campaign, and the Bruins helped with the publicity. Family members and friends made donations.

He was pleased to see the support from his teammates.

“The boys had a lot of fun with it. Most of them donated a little bit, and if they didn’t donate, they had nice things to say, and spread the word about it,” said Nicholas.

It also allowed him to take a leadership role in the community just a few weeks after he came to Estevan.

He’s learned a lot about the work that Envision does in the region by providing counselling services and assisting people during difficult times.

Envision was selected over the Movember Foundation, which is where most people direct their Movember support, because he wanted to see the money stay in the community.

“Envision Counselling was a way to help directly benefit a community while showing our support within the community,” said Nicholas.

Tania Hlohovsky-Andrist, who works in resource development with Envision, said the money will go to their counselling programs. Envision has been expanding, and embarking on initiatives such as walk-in counselling.

“Supporting these programs is expensive, so as we try to grow and expand, we require more funds,” she said.

Initially when they found out that a member of the Bruins was interested in helping an organization that is traditionally thought of as a women’s organization, it was viewed as validation that Envision’s message of helping out all individuals – men, women, families and  youths – is reaching more people.

“We’re in the schools and we’re in the community. To hear that a Bruin hockey player – something you traditionally associate with that super macho sport – is thinking that Envision Counselling is valid for his donation effort, is great,” said Hlohovsky-Andrist.

Envision is always in need of donations, and it affects a lot of people. She is pleased to see that Nicholas wants to help people in the community, and the publicity has made a big difference.

Mental health is an emerging issue in this decade, she said. People are becoming more aware of mental health issues, and when a young person says it’s OK to ask for help, it makes a big difference.


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