Donation supports immediate and brief mental health services in St. Catharines

(St. Catharines, Oct. 10, 2019) – Canadian Mental Health Association, Niagara Branch is pleased to accept a $12,500 donation from Mayor Walter Sendzik and the 2019 St. Catharines Mayor Invitational Golf Tournament  

The donation, which is part of a $25,000 commitment to CMHA Niagara, will support the region-wide provision of CMHA Niagara’s immediate and brief services at the 264 Welland Avenue, St. Catharines location. Some of these services include:

  • Safe Beds: a short-term, voluntary crisis residential program
  • Urgent Support: same day service mental health counselling in crisis management
  • Crisis Outreach and Support Team: mobile crisis outreach and intervention service offering immediate telephone counselling and on-site crisis outreach intervention

“ It is an honour to be able to support the important work of CMHA Niagara in providing individuals with mental health care programs and services,” said Mayor Sendzik. “It is important to me that the residents of St. Catharines have adequate access to mental health and addictions services when and where they need them and I am proud that through our sponsors and supporters, the golf tournament is able to make a difference.”

Last year, CMHA Niagara supported 4,323 people with immediate and brief services that ranged from referrals, to urgent support, to mobile crisis, short-term crisis, immediate services for youth, and more.

“We are so grateful for the support of Mayor Sendzik, the committee, and all of the golf tournament attendees for supporting  the critical services CMHA Niagara provides to individuals requiring mental health and addictions care in our community,” said CMHA Niagara executive director Tara McKendrick. “Our immediate and brief services, which includes crisis programs, exist to help individuals in Niagara, and this donation will help us continue to provide the best possible care to our community in a timely and accessible way.”

The donation comes as CMHA Niagara recognizes Mental Illness Awareness Week from Oct. 6 to12, an annual national public education campaign co-ordinated by the Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health (CAMIMH). This year’s MIAW Faces of Mental Illness campaign encourages Canadians to spread awareness and reduce all forms of stigma around mental illness by sharing their personal stories and joining the conversation online using the hashtag #MIAW19. As mental illness directly and indirectly affects more than six million people across the country, the campaign encourages Canadians to engage in a discussion on the need to end societal stigmatization of mental illness and call for increased access to mental health services.

Fast facts:

  • By age 40, about 50 per cent of the population will have or have had a mental illness.
  • Almost half (49 per cent) of those who feel they have suffered from depression or anxiety have never gone to see a doctor about this problem.
  • Of Canadians aged 15 or older who report having a mental health care need, one-third state their needs have not been fully met.

Resources available:

Urgent Support Services: Mental health counsellors provide same day service to individuals by exploring their immediate concerns and offering assistance with crisis management and problem solving. These services are available from 11:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. Monday to Friday at 264 Welland Avenue in St. Catharines and 6760 Morrison Avenue in Niagara Falls.

COAST (Crisis Outreach and Support Team): COAST is a mobile crisis outreach and intervention service offing immediate telephone counselling and on-site crisis outreach intervention as needed. It operates 24/7. Call 1-866-550-5205 for 24/7 confidential support.

Access Line: The mental health and addictions access line provides resources and referrals to over 100 services available in Niagara. Call 1-866-550-5205 for 24/7 confidential support.

About Canadian Mental Health Association, Niagara Branch

Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), Niagara Branch is one of a network of over 135 branches that offer mental health services in communities across Canada. For more than 50 years, CMHA Niagara has been providing mental health programs and services in Niagara to assist individuals 16 years and older with reaching their short and long-term mental health goals and needs. CMHA Niagara exists to strengthen mental wellness in the Niagara community to create a Niagara where mental health is recognized, supported and optimized. Recognized as a respected partner in the community-based mental health system, CMHA Niagara provides a continuum of mental health services from crisis intervention and support, case management, housing and employment.

About the St. Catharines Mayor Invitational Golf Tournament

The Mayor’s Invitational Golf Tournament is an annual fundraiser held by the sitting mayor of

St. Catharines with the support of an organizing committee. Recipients of the tournament proceeds include local charities and non-profit organizations. Previous recipients include the Pathstone Foundation, Hotel Dieu Shaver Health and Rehabilitation Foundation, YWCA Niagara Region, Youth Unlimited St. Catharines, the Niagara Health System It’s Our Time Campaign, the Kristen French Child Advocacy Centre, the Niagara Children’s Centre and more. Details and date for the 2020 tournament will be announced in early 2020 at