For the last three years, on the Friday night prior to National Mental Health Week, Four Women for Mental Health (Janice Beattie, Carol Coote, Susan Hertz and Debra Montanini) have hosted an increasingly popular Punchline Comedy Night in Regina. In its inaugural year, 300 people attended, three years later, the Comedy Night has grown to over 800 and raised over $110,000 in support of Mental Health in our community. This year our goal is to sell 1000 tickets.
Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) Regina Branch offers programming for over 650 members. Our members are individuals managing a life with a chronic mental illness who often experience barriers. These barriers may include low self-esteem and confidence, social isolation and poor access to education and employment. It is the hope of CMHA Regina Branch to assist those with these barriers, and soften many others, to gain an improved quality of life. Such a life includes meaningful work, adequate income, good housing, accessible education and training, enjoyable recreational activities, friendship, and fun with others.
Our members club acts as the hub for this work. Every day each member has access to things such as social recreational programming, art therapy, a theatre group and peer support groups to name just a few things. Our food services program provides lunch and dinner 5 days a week and a lunch on the weekends for in excess of 60 individuals each day.
In response to the needs of our community, in December 2016, CMHA Regina added Community Engagement to our work. One area of focus is helping to build capacity within our schools regarding mental health education and understanding for our children and youth as well as for parents and teachers. This will be done through various presentations and the development of resource materials that will hopefully see mental health be included in our school curriculums.
With great appreciation to Punchline Comedy Night, the funds raised at this year’s event will:
Enhance and sustain our Community Engagement work through such programs as;
the development and pilot of an elementary school “Buddy Bench” program. The purpose of the “Buddy Bench” would be to help children learn about diversity, compassion and inclusiveness. We also would like to establish a similar “bench” program for high schools and post secondary schools where the focus would be on mental health – particularly a visual reminder to engage in conversation and talk about mental health issues.
Support much needed improvements in our kitchen where we operate our food services program this enables us to continue providing nutritious meals, employment and training opportunities to individuals living with a Mental Illness in our community
For more information about our services please visit our website: