How can we support each other?
What supports do you need during this unusual period of COVID-19 isolation? Do you have ideas? Join the conversation on facebook, twitter or instagram or email us at Covid@cmha.bc.ca
Canadian Mental Health Association services get creative to connect
Vancouver, March 23, 2020 – As British Columbians face an unprecedented health crisis due to COVID-19, the Canadian Mental Health Association is responding to support their mental health. “This situation is unprecedented and we recognize that COVID-19 is having and will have impacts upon people’s mental health,” said Jonny Morris, Chief Executive Officer of Canadian Mental Health Association, BC Division. “Social connection and belonging are core to good mental health. We are hearing from more people who are worried, anxious and scared. That’s why we are working hard to shift as many of our services to phone and online,” said Morris.
CMHA across the province is receiving increased calls for support, even while most offices are closed and in-person groups are put on hold. Here is a sample of how CMHA Branches are responding —
- In Quesnel, low-cost counselling is being offered by phone instead of in-person;
- In Vernon, the mental health clubhouse is doing a daily phone check-in with their members and shifted a planned Teen Night to a virtual event;
- In Kelowna, both peer support and Discovery College programs are going online;
- In Penticton and the Kootenays, meal programs have switched to take-out bag lunches;
- In Vancouver, transitional housing, youth supported independent living, community living support, employment support and the Echo clubhouse have added COVID-19 screening on site;
- In Victoria, CMHA’s employment program sent a personal video message of reassurance to clients;
CMHA’s BC Division office continues to work hard expanding supports to British Columbians online and by phone.
The CMHA and BC Partners Mental Health Information & Referral services continue as always by email at email@example.com or by leaving a message at 1-800-555-8222. For more information about local and provincial services, visit cmha.bc.ca.
Services continue during COVID-19
March 16, 2020 — We at Canadian Mental Health Association, BC Division are working hard to support British Columbians during this unprecedented period of COVID-19 response. We’ve shared an article with some tips on how to manage the isolation and anxiety around this pandemic.
This is a hard time, particularly for people living with mental illness who are now more isolated from their usual supports.
Because we mostly do not provide in-person services at our provincial office we have decided to temporarily close our Vancouver and Victoria offices. We’re doing this to play our own small part in “flattening the curve” and slowing the spread of this virus to vulnerable people. Staff are working from home to ensure as many services continue as possible. Those include:
- Mental health information, referral and support at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
- Healthy Minds | Healthy Campuses program and Spring 2020 Scholarships & Bursaries
- Public education & awareness on social media and online here at cmha.bc.ca and HeretoHelp.bc.ca
- BounceBack online at www.online.bouncebackonline.ca/
- Policy, advocacy, support for DIY fundraisers, and media relations
- Support to the network of 14 CMHA branches
We have also postponed large events, including the Bottom Line Conference, General Meetings and workplace training sessions. Our coaching programs Confident Parents, Thriving Kids (Behaviour and Anxiety streams) and BounceBack are continuing to support our clients as much as possible while still protecting our staff teams.
Now is the time to reach out to someone (via email, phone, or online chat) for connection, encouragement, and to build community.
For those struggling with anxiety, check out the great resources on www.anxietycanada.com.
Take good care of yourself, each other and your mental and physical well-being during this stressful time. And as always, your support for our work through your time, suggestions and financial contributions are appreciated. Donate
Chief Executive Officer