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Brief Services Program


Business No: 871080644RR0001

Brief Services Program

We have an emotional mental health pandemic on our hands.

Meet Rose, this articulate six-year-old will tell you, “I have 15,000 worries. I’m worried something will happen to the world, and I won’t be ready for it. I worry that my house will break into pieces.” Rose also told her therapist Sheri, she is carrying her best-friends worries too.

It should come as no surprise that the mental health of each-and-every one of us has been challenged at some point over the past 18 months.

As the primary provider of children’s mental health services in Niagara, we can share with you that cases of Anxiety, Depression, and Self-Harm have never been as high as they are right now in our Region.

We asked our team what kids have been experiencing over the last 17 months.

This is what kids told them; 

  • They are worried and anxious
  • They are suffering grief and loss over not being able to see friends and family, and loss of extra-curricular activities
  • There have been family breakdowns/meltdowns
  • They are overwhelmed by online learning, fear they will fall behind in school, and in some cases, kids have seen their grades drop.
  • They are depressed, have harmed themselves, are struggling with eating disorders which is typically rooted in another mental health issue, and have thought about suicide. *Predominantly with pre-teens and teens.
  • They lack motivation to do anything
  • They aren’t sleeping
  • They are using drugs and are making other unhealthy and dangerous choices.

While inoculations will allow us to move more freely, it cannot undo what has already happened.

     In short, kids have lost their balance

We are seeing kids like Rose every day, and were the only child and youth mental health provider in Niagara who was meeting with kids in-person. Still, with the crushing demand for mental health support, our wait list grows.

We have 241 kids on our wait list. (As of July, 8, 2021)

They are waiting up to 3 months to get into our short-term program

This is not OK

The fact is, the longer a child waits for treatment, the worse or more complex their issue can become. Before COVID-19, we did not have a wait list for this program.

Our concern is, by the time kids are called for Brief Services, which offer up to 6 mental health sessions, their issues may have worsened or become more complex, which would require even more therapy, possibly up to 25 sessions.

We have a solution to the problem, but we need your help.

We saw close to 10,000 kids over the past 12 months, a 35 percent increase and we expect to see even higher numbers this year. Our wait list will not disappear and will only grow. Without stable funding, the Brief Services program and other programs won’t have the ability to work down the wait list.

We need you to make a commitment to us. Can we count you in?

If you feel compelled to help eliminate the wait list for good, and allow us to offer support programs that families can count on, year after year, I am encouraging you to become a monthly donor today or make a one-time gift. This level of support ensures that we can keep committing to programs that help kids, without interruption.

Together, we can help kids regain their balance,

Thank you,

Kim Rossi, Director of Philanthropy / 905-688-6850 x 167