Recognizing the difficulties their clients may face over the holidays, Scarborough Health Network (SHN) has been a long-term partner of CMHA Toronto’s holiday gift program. Nicole Kitchen, a residential counsellor with SHN, shared her thoughts about the impact the program has on the people who receive gifts like Christine, and those, like her, who give them.
CMHA Toronto’s holiday gift program has been spreading joy and lifting spirits for more than 50 years. The program’s gifts are more than just presents: they’re messages of hope, care, and belonging for those who may feel forgotten at what is often a difficult time of year. Learn more.
In a fragmented health care system, Scarborough Health Network, Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences, and the Durham and Toronto branches of the Canadian Mental Health Association have come together to reduce inefficiencies and prevent people from falling through the gaps. Read more about how the collaboration is aligning practitioners around a best-practice approach to care for people diagnosed with schizophrenia, their families, and their care teams.
Ontario is grappling with a deepening drug poisoning crisis. The harms related to unregulated opioids have seen a sharp uptick, with more emergency room visits, hospitalizations, and fatal overdoses. Harm reduction, an approach endorsed by Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada, is an evidence-based strategy for addressing this crisis.
Black Creek Community Health Centre is the newest community partner agency to join CMHA Toronto’s Virtual Community Care Hubs. The program is not only increasing the impact and reach of BCCHC’s virtual diabetes management services, it’s also improving their clients’ digital literacy and, with that, digital equity for underserved communities in northeast Toronto.
Since the pandemic, going virtual has represented a convenient, low- or no-cost way for many people to access health services and enabled more people connect to the care they need. CMHA Toronto’s Virtual Community Care Hubs (VCCHs) have evolved to serve this need and continue to grow with new technology, new content, and new community partners.
Fadumo Ibrahim, case manager, spoke with us about CMHA Toronto’s Rehabilitation Action Program, a culturally and linguistically focused community-based program for Afghan, Somali and Tamil people living with serious mental illness like bipolar or schizophrenia. \
CMHA Toronto is leading a multi-agency research team to increase collaboration across the sector and ultimately provide better access to high-quality community mental health services. Read more from CMHA Toronto’s Chief Research Officer, Frank Sirotich, who spoke with us about this important and innovative study.
Through vivid case examples, learn how TCCS’s non-carceral, compassionate, and client-centric approach puts “a foot in that revolving door of crisis to get to the root of the issue” for those experiencing a mental health emergency.
Archana, manager, and Matthew, clinical lead, of Toronto Community Crisis Service (TCCS) spoke with us about the pilot program launched July 2022 that is creating space and safety between the police response to those in mental health crisis and the often-retraumatizing hospital environment.
“We’re always acutely aware of the impact trauma has on our clients and the impact that it has on those of us who serve them,” says Housing First manager, Pio Giralico. In June, we spoke with the Housing First team who shared their reflections, insights, and techniques for dealing with the day-to-day trauma they experience in their work.
Three Housing First clients share their stories of recovery and resilience in the face of different challenges.
These days, in major centres across North America including Toronto, the right to housing is going unfulfilled for some of society’s most vulnerable. So, in the meantime, CMHA Toronto’s Housing First team offers support, counselling, access to healthcare, and other resources that can keep people afloat as they work to secure safe, affordable housing.
Elly Litvak and Shannon O’Neill, family navigators with CMHA Toronto’s Family Navigation & Support program, offer five things to keep in mind if you have a loved one who has recently been hospitalized for a mental health concern.
It can be scary, confusing, and frustrating to interact with the mental health care system. But for hundreds of people whose loved ones are involved in psychiatric care at St. Joseph’s Health Centre, Elly Litvak and Shannon O’Neill are companions, guides, and advocates for the kind of support that is often unavailable to families.
Although their routes to and through the mental health system varied, Liz, Sharon, Connie, and Linda found that their paths became a little less rocky and their skills and spirits were strengthened once they were connected with the resources and support available from CMHA Toronto’s Family Navigation & Support program.
Women who join one of CMHA Toronto’s multi-cultural women’s wellness groups are sure to find something of interest and value – delivered for them, with them and often by them. While multicultural women’s wellness groups have been available through partnerships between CMHA Toronto and various community agencies for more than a dozen years, going online during the pandemic enabled the groups to reach more people and engage more guest speakers than ever before.
Clients and family members are deeply embedded in the culture and structure of the agency, participating in working groups, committees, and throughout each program area. Including the client voice is intentional, mission-critical, and a best practice for advocacy and change for which CMHA Toronto is recognized in the broader community.
In spring 2020 – as the pandemic was shutting down in-person learning around the world – CMHA Toronto collaborated with Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences to take a curriculum of mental health and recovery-related educational courses online. Now in its fourth year, CMHA Toronto’s Recovery College has grown from five courses to a catalogue of more than 50 – learning that advances the recovery journey.
CMHA Toronto joins individuals and organizations worldwide to celebrate the history, courage and diversity of Two-Spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning, intersex and asexual (2SLGBTQIA+) individuals for Pride Month in June.
A six-month community treatment order started Jacqualine on a road to recovery that took her life in directions she could barely have imagined. Thanks to her own active engagement, growing confidence, and the steady support of CMHA Toronto’s community treatment order team, Jacqueline now serves as a beacon of hope and inspiration for those who are taking a similar journey.
The Intake, Information & Referral Team [Amanda at centre and Maria at far right] and student volunteers at a mental health and wellness fair held at the Jane-Finch Mall in fall 2022 CMHA Toronto’s Intake, Information and Referral Program is noticing a massive spike in demand in the post-pandemic period just at a time when the availability of services is
Sabrina Giralico sat down with us to talk about her role as a case manager with CMHA Toronto. This interview has been condensed and lightly edited for clarity.
This winter the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) Toronto launched a food bank program to support our clients with mental health challenges who were also struggling with food insecurity.
An integrated care pathway for people diagnosed with schizophrenia has been developed through a partnership between Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences (Ontario Shores), Scarborough Health Network (SHN), Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) Toronto, and Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) Durham.
The Canadian Mental Health Association Toronto Branch (CMHA Toronto) is proud to announce its partnership with the West Toronto Ontario Health Team to deliver a series of free mental health workshops to the public. The workshops will be focused on promoting mental wellness, providing support, and building resilience for individuals and communities during these challenging times. The partnership is part
CMHA Toronto has achieved a perfect score in its recent accreditation survey with Accreditation Canada – receiving Accreditation with Exemplary Standing.
CMHA Toronto joins organizations across the country this week in celebrating National Volunteer Week. Volunteer Canada’s theme for this year’s National Volunteer Week is Volunteering Weaves us Together. The intent behind this year’s theme is to celebrate individual and collective actions in creating strong, interconnected and vibrant communities. Volunteers are crucial to CMHA Toronto’s ability to provide well-resourced and effective
In 2016, with 25,000 people arriving in Canada fleeing the trauma of the Syrian civil war, CMHA Toronto expanded its Opening Doors Project to include a youth mentorship component. A more intensive approach to address newcomers’ mental health issues in the context of their resettlement was urgently needed.
After a hiatus during COVID-19, CMHA Toronto’s Extreme Cleaning and Hoarding Supports program is catching up with a backlog of cases on two fronts: those that were put on hold when the pandemic lockdowns started, and the demand that built up during COVID isolation that worsened the conditions driving the need in the first place.
NP Stepped Care liaises with four community-based ACT (Assertive Community Treatment) teams to identify and transition clients who are at a point in their recovery where they no longer require intensive support but still require medication, counselling, and case management services. The program also accepts clients from other CMHA Toronto programs.
The provincial government has allocated the largest base funding commitment for community mental health and addictions care in a decade as part of their 2023 budget. The government announced Thursday that it is providing the sector with $425 million over three years for mental health and addictions, including a five per cent increase for base funding of community-based mental health
CMHA Toronto is committed to equity, shared knowledge, advocacy and accountability at individual, organizational and systemic levels. We will provide effective mental health services that are accessible, meaningful and appropriate to diverse individuals and communities. CMHA Toronto opposes and acts against racism and other forms of discrimination, including those based on physical and mental disabilities, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, religious beliefs,