Mindful Musings (Executive Director)

/Mindful Musings (Executive Director)

Our Executive Director, George Kurzawa, will share thoughts and comments about what’s happening here at CMHA Niagara, in the community, in the healthcare system, and/or any other relevant topic related to mental health.

12 July, 2016

Feel Validated

2017-01-04T09:57:44+00:00 Categories: Mindful Musings (Executive Director)|

“I feel validated and acknowledged regarding my issues, it is a good feeling. Today really isn’t turning out to be so bad after all! Thank you very much!!” That’s a direct quote from one of our clients, and there are many more like it. Without being too self-congratulatory, our staff does a wonderful job at meeting needs of people living with mental illness. Here are some more quotes: "Allowed me to share my stories, have someone who was unbiased to the situation. Guided me through the session and guided me to my answers." "This session has reminded me of who [...]

17 June, 2016

ED Abridged June 2016 AGM

2017-01-04T09:57:44+00:00 Categories: Mindful Musings (Executive Director)|

Our speakers today focus on service in the community. First and foremost however, is assuring you that our services are competent and worthy of continued support from our funders which ultimately are you as the tax payers of this community. The best method we have of objectively presenting this is through our annual scorecard, now in its fourth year of operation. Scorecards were developed in the business sector to identify to shareholders the health of their company in financial terms. They gradually expanded the items measured to the human and service components and have been adapted by health agencies like [...]

12 May, 2016

AGM’s: They can be boring, so why have them?

2017-01-04T09:57:45+00:00 Categories: Mindful Musings (Executive Director)|

One of the regular activities that happens in charitable agencies this time of year, is the Annual General Meeting. Why have them ? They can be boring and that’s why many agencies fill them with interesting speakers, food and other events. They are used to cushion the boring parts: financial data and speeches on how great everything is. Sometimes things are great but not always. You have to look between the lines. As a publicly funded agency, it is our opportunity and our duty to show you what we have been doing with public and private money. As a recipient [...]

29 April, 2016

Strategic Planning CMHA Ontario – Ride the Wave of Support

2017-01-04T09:57:45+00:00 Categories: Mindful Musings (Executive Director)|

CMHA Ontario has instituted strategic planning and CMHA Niagara will be sending two Board members and two senior staff for contribution to the discussion. We know the facts: 30% of the Ontario population aged 15 or over will experience a mental health or substance abuse problem at some point in their life and this will cost the Ontario economy an estimated $38.1B per year in health costs, law enforcement costs, research and prevention and other direct costs such as fires and accidents. We also know that 8.1 per 100,000 people die from suicide in Ontario and its worse (9) in [...]

11 April, 2016

Food Distribution

2016-11-29T12:20:17+00:00 Categories: Mindful Musings (Executive Director)|

Yesterday I was going out for my Tim Horton’s. I came across into an individual who frequently visits the Tim’s and is treated rather nicely I would say. He is homeless and they may give him a donut or other treat while he uses their washroom. What got me thinking was, “Why do I have everything I need to eat while he scrounges for food? Is there a food shortage?” The answer is no. There is actually a food surplus. Researchers found that over the past five decades food availability has climbed higher and higher, while still not reaching people who [...]

15 March, 2016

Ontario Housing

2016-11-29T12:19:35+00:00 Categories: Mindful Musings (Executive Director)|

The Ontario government announced on March 14, 2016 that it will be introducing legislative and policy measures along with new investments to ensure that people have access to affordable and adequate housing. http://bit.ly/1PaxYHP Yes there are budget limits but where is the increased funding to the sector. Policing and criminalization of the homeless of which people with mental illness are a substantial group, has gone up, according to a CBC radio interview of March 15th, 2016. It costs more to police than to provide adequate services.. So where are the priorities? Mental illnesses and addictions in Ontario is more than [...]

3 March, 2016

Patients First

2017-01-04T09:57:45+00:00 Categories: Mindful Musings (Executive Director)|

Patients First is the provincial government blueprint for health care transformation. The document titled: “Patients First: a proposal to strengthen patient – centred care in Ontario” focuses on the obvious need to place patients/clients at the centre of health service. When I mentioned this to friends of mine, they quickly remarked; “….and you need a policy paper to say this?” It seems like an obvious point, that patients should be first in the health care system. However, we know for many, including those we serve, that it’s Patients Last. There is a shortage of services, long waiting lists and even denial [...]

18 February, 2016

Poverty and Ontario Disability Support Plan

2017-01-04T09:57:45+00:00 Categories: Mindful Musings (Executive Director)|

It is no secret that most of our clients live in poverty, and depend on government assistance for their survival, and it is survival, at the meager amounts provided. It’s not easy for a single person surviving on $ 13,320 maximum per year. Most Canadians live on substantially more and many of those are in debt.  Many of our clients live on much less than even the maximum offered through the Ontario Disability Support Program ( ODSP) Last week, the Ministry of Community and Social Services http://bit.ly/1T18iUc , announced changes to the medical review process for the Ontario Disability Support [...]

28 January, 2016

Board Members

2017-01-04T09:57:45+00:00 Categories: Mindful Musings (Executive Director)|

Some bad news and then some good news…… For a variety of reasons, mostly related to job requirements such as moving to New Brunswick, moving to Sarnia, we have had a number of resignations of Board members. This certainly reflects the kind of mobility that is required of individuals to maintain and develop their careers. It’s an issue that charitable agencies have to deal with more frequently, as they rely on highly motivated career-oriented  volunteers. Most of the work by Board volunteers happens at the various committees, where certain skills and expertise is required. For example, the Finance Committee requires [...]

11 January, 2016

Syrian Refugees

2016-11-29T12:05:01+00:00 Categories: Mindful Musings (Executive Director)|

At a recent Refugee Meeting chaired by Jeff Burch, we were collectively impressed with the amount of people, money and other resources that have been brought together for the Syrian refugees, including the offer of mental health services. CMHA, in its small contribution to the effort, is currently providing Mental Health First Aid to the 18 staff at the Welland Multicultural Centre. As a committee we congratulated ourselves and Niagara on our ability to reach out and support our fellow human beings. Good on us…..and…. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could garner this kind of support for our most [...]

For general inquiries on our programs and services, please call 905-641-5222.

The following 24/7 crisis and information is available:

Distress Centre Niagara: 905-688-3711

COAST: 1-866-550-5205 (Press 1)

Mental Health and Addictions Access Line: 1-866-550-5205 (Press 2)