We know that mental health is incredibly important during these uncertain times and we want to provide as much support to people that we can in the safest way possible. CMHA Calgary has closed our in-person services at our main office, but are still offering support through phone and email. We fully expect an increase in need for our services in the coming days and weeks as this pandemic and social distancing continues, and the economy and job market experience uncertainty and need support from the Calgary community to continue offering services.
We are looking for funds that will help address three areas of need that we have identified since the COVID-19 pandemic, along with adapting our programs and service to continue to serve our clients during this time.
Emergent Needs (current state): We will be using funds donated to help support our Supportive Living Programs. We are in need of food, supplies and equipment to keep our clients and staff safe and healthy, while staying in line with new procedures and protocols required because of COVID-19. Our Supportive Living Program is considered an essential services and we are committed to providing them everything needed during this time to keep everyone safe.
Immediate Needs (1 month): We need to adapt our service delivery methods. In the past, we have done the majority of our service delivery face-to-face. With that not possible during this pandemic, we are learning how to provide virtual learning and support. This includes immediately delivering our Peer Support and Counselling programs online through email and on the phone. While we have offered these in the past, we have had to set up new procedures and protocols to offer these services remotely. To offer our existing services remotely, we need to update our technological resources, such as new computers and software. It will also support our educational sessions, such as stress management and mental health 101, through online meetings to corporate groups and community organizations. We have received many request from these groups to assist in providing wellness information and tips to their employees during this time that will help them cope and take care of themselves.
Short Terms Needs (2-3 months): We want to expand to offer video program delivery to our clients. This will include video support to our Counselling and Peer Support clients, which needs to maintain a private and confidential connection. We also want to offer our Recovery College courses through online classrooms, which would facilitate a similar level of connection and interactions that students and facilitators experienced in our previous in-person Recovery College courses. During this time, we also need to continue providing support to our Supportive Living Programs with food and supplies.
We thank everyone in advance for supporting CMHA Calgary during this time to help keep our clients and staff safe.