first aid kits are a convenient and quick way
to deal with minor injuries. Tina Chan, who is
working towards a health studies degree at the
University of Waterloo, had the idea to develop
a similar resource to address stress and anxiety.
She successfully pitched her idea, dubbed the
PASS kit, at the Big Ideas Challenge event held
in March 2015 at GreenHouse, a live-in incubator focused on social innovation at St. Paul’s
University College on the U of Waterloo campus.
“First aid kits address trauma emergencies
until further help comes, if needed. We noticed
an absence of a similar aid for mental health
issues, where a tool to help guide the person
towards healthy coping mechanisms would be
beneficial until professional help is available,”
Ms. Chan explains. She and her team used the
$1,500 awarded from the GreenHouse competition to conduct a pilot study of the kits and to
produce them for sale starting this past February.
Student develops a ‘first aid kit’ to
deal with stress
Un index de citations en français, s’il vous plaît!
Chinese on the menu at U of T
Few women quoted in Canadian news
Veterinary college has its own social worker
Campus Ici et là Here and there
Ms. Chan and her team brainstormed items
they felt would be useful in the kits. They in-
clude a stress-relieving squeeze toy, sleep mask,
chewing gum, ear plugs and a set of flashcards
called Cards for Good Thoughts that offer in-
formation and suggestions for when you’re
feeling overwhelmed. Ms. Chan says the kits
should also help to kick-start a conversation
around mental health.
“It is important for my generation to build
and develop the skills to manage stress in order
to surmount challenges in the workplace upon
graduation,” she says. “The PASS kit encourages users to be attentive to their mental health,
much like their physical health.”
– ashleigh vanhouten
Kits encourage healthy coping strategies, says developer Tina Chan
Among the items in the PASS kit is
a squeeze toy for stress relief.