A Message from Gail – November 2016

Gail Small

Gail Small

The World Health Organisation recognizes World Mental Health Day on 10 October every year. At Ometz, we recognize mental health day every day, all year round.

With an emphasis on fostering skills, autonomy and hope, we have developed a range of programs and services to target the stigma attached to mental illness and to invest in the future of our clients and the mental health community at large. Our goal is to provide community-based services to this vulnerable and overlooked population—one that often falls between the cracks of our strained public health care system.

The dedicated team working in the Mental Health Support Services currently assists more than 160 adults living with illnesses such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression and anxiety disorder, many of whom live well below the poverty line. Our major objective is to support our clients by increasing connection to community, promoting autonomy and equipping them with necessary life and coping skills.

This past year, we have been able to introduce a number of new, exciting initiatives focusing on providing our clients living with mental illness with more promising futures. These include expanded services for young adults with autism spectrum disorders and intellectual disabilities; the expansion of the Ometz Collective Kitchen, a successful new initiative that helps participants plan, purchase and cook nutritional meals on a budget; and our Glee Club, a combination choir and performance group that meets weekly and performs at various community events. We are pleased to report the latter was recently featured in the Montreal Gazette for an article on mental health and the healing powers of music.

We strive to be a recovery-oriented mental health support service. But the road to recovery isn’t always easy, and our success depends in many ways on the support of our generous donors. It is thanks to the incredible support of the ECHO Foundation, Centraide, the MONTREAL WALKS for Mental Health Foundation, the Gustav Levinschi Foundation, the Government of Quebec, Federation CJA and the BDH Community Foundation, that we are able to provide our clients with services that would otherwise have been out of reach.

I hope you will be inspired by this issue of Onews and join us on our mission to increase awareness and access to mental health services for our community.

Sincerely,

Gail Small
Chief Executive Officer

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