On May 7, 2013, as part of Mental Health Week, the JGH Centre for Child Development and Mental Health announced a generous donation of $230,000 from the Bell Let's Talk mental health initiative to support our innovative Child Psychiatry Transitional Care Program. This unique program provides crucial follow-up and support services to children and their families following discharge from Child Psychiatry Day Hospital Services, to aid in the child's successful reintegration into school and the community.
“These children were referred for mental health problems so severe that they were unable to attend their community schools, and are at greater risk for developing serious mental disorders later in life," says Dr. Phyllis Zelkowitz, Director of Research in the Department of Psychiatry. “Bell's donation is truly a lifeline for the program, which plays a vital role in the continuum of care of our mental health system. It will allow a greater number of vulnerable children and their families to benefit from the inclusive, compassionate and comprehensive care they need to enjoy the healthy and productive life they deserve."
Thanks to Bell's donation, the Division of Child Psychiatry will be able to reconstitute its experienced transition team, which comprises a social worker and two childcare workers; acquire computer equipment, portable tablets and cell phones enabling the team to be more efficient and available in responding to the needs of parents and school staff; reach out to French language school boards and expand the program so that more families can benefit from it. In addition, the transition team will provide consultation and organize workshops to train school personnel and service providers in CSSSs and other community organizations to work effectively with the families of children with mental health problems. The transition team will also develop a manual in both French and English, which will enable the program's principles and approaches to be shared with all service providers, as well as a bilingual website that will provide ongoing support and additional resources, especially in terms of early detection and prevention.
“Bell Let's Talk is committed to improving access to mental health training, education and care," said Martine Turcotte, Bell's Vice Chair, Québec. “We are proud to support the Jewish General Hospital in helping young people and their families get the support they need through the Child Psychiatry Transitional Care Program."
“Bell's thoughtful support will make a lifelong difference for children coping with mental illness and our society as a whole," concurs JGH Foundation President and CEO Myer Bick. “It is thanks to the commitment and vision of leading corporate citizens like Bell Canada that we can pave the way for better treatment and outcomes for our children today and in years to come. Together, we do have the power to heal!"