For Immediate Release
June 5th, 2017
Local Mental Health Leaders Chart the Way Forward at today's  Roundtable 

WINDSOR, ON More than 50 community leaders and mental health service providers came together Monday to help identify service improvements and begin to remove barriers for those experiencing mental health issues. The day, meant to be a catalyst for action, focused on three topics identified in an environmental scan completed in October. Topics included Transitional Aged Youth, Community Psychiatry linking to Primary Care and Housing and Homelessness.

Tamara Kowalska, Executive Director of the Windsor Youth Centre provided an agency perspective to the group, confirming how her organization and clients feel all three of these issues in the work they do.

" Mental illness, addiction, and lack of affordable housing all play a role in youth homelessness.  Real change in our community demands a willingness to be critical of our current practice as well as a commitment to compassion.  These are difficult tasks but the rewards are virtually guaranteed," she said.

The idea for the Mental Health Roundtable came in the Summer of 2016 when a group of local leaders decided that it was time to pause and review our changing Windsor/ Essex Mental Health System.

"We know that all service providers are bursting at the seams. The question then becomes how we can support each other by making changes to help the entire system and not just our own organization. We have to think about Mental Health Services in Windsor/Essex collectively. It is the only way we will continue to see improvements in service delivery," said Janice Kaffer, President and CEO of Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare.

From today's Round Table, a document of findings and action-items will be completed. System improvement will continue and a community-based agreement about where effort is required to improve supports will be finalized. 

Media Contact:
Bill Marra, Vice President External Affairs, Executive Director, Changing Lives Together Foundation -  (519) 919-0033 (cell)
About Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare

Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare is a premium healthcare centre offering Rehabilitation Services; Specialized Mental Health & Addictions; Complex Medical and Palliative Care; and Children and Youth Mental Health Services. HDGH has a unique blended model of specialized inpatient beds; outpatient residential beds; as well as outpatient and community services.