6 Ontario Organizations Receive Grants from Medavie Health Foundation

From access to mental health care to type 2 diabetes prevention, six Ontario organizations are being supported in their efforts to provide community-based programs for those at-risk.

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From left to right: Kelly Scott, Senior Communications Advisor, Medavie Blue Cross; Julia Vanderheule, Director of Transitional Age Youth Program, Loft Community Services – EdgeWest Clinic; Gillian Saunders, EdgeWest Youth Counsellor, Loft Community Services – EdgeWest Clinic, and Lesley McCullough, Grants Review Committee Member & Account Executive, Medavie Blue Cross.

The funding is provided through the Medavie Health Foundation’s 2017 Grants Program, targeting child and youth mental health, post-traumatic stress disorder, and type 2 diabetes.

  • YouthNet, an initiative of the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO), is using a $5,000 grant to support Netting Our Communities Together, a community outreach program providing early intervention/prevention programs for youth with a goal to improve mental resiliency and positive coping skills.
  • Covenant House Toronto is using a $10,000 grant to provide care to homeless and marginalized youth experiencing mental health issues, helping them build the skills they need to live in the community. This is our second grant to Covenant, bringing our funding to $20,000.
  • A $25,000 grant to Dignitas International will support their Community Health Worker Diabetesprogram aimed at improving diabetes care in First Nations communities in the Sioux Lookout area of Northern Ontario. With a focus on children and their families, the program will provide education on type 2 diabetes prevention, early diagnosis and treatment.
  • A $20,000 grant to Eva’s Initiatives for Homeless Youth will support Family Reconnect Prevention and Early Intervention in providing rapid-response counselling to high-risk youth and their families in helping resolve issues that can lead to family breakdown and homelessness. The Foundation also supported this program in 2016, bringing our funding to $40,000.
  • Jack.org, A $25,000 grant to Jack.org, a student-led mental health network, is allowing for the expansion of Jack Chapters across Ontario. The program’s student-led approach helps build capacity for advocacy and improved mental health literacy, helping young people get the mental health care they need.
  • A $20,000 grant to LOFT Community Services will support the provision of mental health services for transitional age youth aged 13-26 at EdgeWest. Located in Toronto’s West End neighbourhood, EdgeWest serves youth experiencing complex mental health issues, addictions, poverty, and social isolation, helping them develop coping skills and supportive relationships.

These are six of the 23 organizations receiving funding through Medavie Health Foundation’s 2017 Grants Program. Since late 2011, the Foundation has committed over $10.7 million to single and multi-year grant and partnership programs, some of which have yet to be announced.

Medavie Covenant House Toronto
From left to right: Lesley McCullough, Grants Review Committee Member & Account Executive, Medavie Blue Cross; Susan Westbrook, Senior Development Officer, Covenant House Toronto, and Kelly Scott, Senior Communications Advisor, Medavie Blue Cross.

Quick Facts

  • 70% of all mental health concerns have their onset during childhood or adolescence. Half of all lifetime cases begin by age 14, three-quarters by age 24, yet only one in five young people get the mental health help they need. 1
  • Some 50% of street-involved youth experience barriers to accessing health services, including not having identification or a health card.
  • Aboriginal people experience type 2 diabetes at rates three to five times higher than the general population. People living with type 2 diabetes have a higher risk of developing heart disease, kidney disease, blindness and amputations.
Medavie Evas Initiatives For Homeless Youth
From left to right: Katy David, Grants Manager, Eva’s Initiatives for Homeless Youth; Lesley McCullough, Grants Review Committee Member & Account Executive, Medavie Blue Cross; Natalie Zoltak, Family Intervention Counsellor, Eva’s Initiatives for Homeless Youth; Justin Sage-Passant, Family Intervention Counsellor, Eva’s Initiatives for Homeless Youth, and Kelly Scott, Senior Communications Advisor, Medavie Blue Cross.

“Through our grants program, we fund grass-roots initiatives that are making a real difference to Canadians on an individual and community level. These organizations support individuals and their families impacted by mental illness or at risk of developing type 2 diabetes in receiving the help they need, while building capacity in our communities. This aligns with our vision, that all Canadians, especially young Canadians, have access to the supports and tools they need to live their best lives.”

Patty Faith, Executive Director, Medavie Health Foundation

“Jack.org is so grateful to have Medavie Health Foundation’s support for school-based Jack Chapters in Ontario. Thanks to this grant, some 150 students will receive mental health education and advocacy training this year. They’ll put those skills to work as they start new Jack Chapters, identifying their community needs and breaking down barriers to positive mental health. Across Canada, 1,400 Jack Chapter students will reach 120,000 of their peers throughout the school year. Medavie’s support is fuelling a mental health revolution.”

Eric Windeler, Founder and Executive Director, Jack.org

Associated Links

CHEO YouthNet
Covenant House Toronto
Dignitas International
Eva’s Initiatives
Loft Community Services

1 Centre for Addiction and Mental Health

Our Mission is to Improve the Wellbeing of Canadians.

Medavie is a health company that oversees Medavie Blue Cross and Medavie Health Services. Together, we’re bringing Canadians better health and access to care.