Child and youth mental health resources now available from home

Mental health resources for children and youth are helping Island families from the comfort of their own homes.
The online programming and telehealth services of the Strongest Families partnership have no wait times and fit families’ schedules, eliminating the need to travel, take time off work or school, or change normal routines. Over the past year, they have helped more than 130 families with children and youth ages 3 to 17 who experience behaviour, anxiety, and/or nighttime bedwetting problems.

"When a child is struggling, a parent’s automatic response is ‘how can I help’,” Health and Wellness Minister Robert Henderson said. “Strongest Families is customized to each family’s needs, providing timely and efficient treatment to help our young people minimize their struggle with schoolwork, making friends, interacting with family members, and the other parts of growing up.”

Families can be referred to the Strongest Families programs through their primary care provider or community mental health services by calling 1-866-833-5443.

There are currently three programs offered:
• Behaviour program (for ages 3 to 12);
• Anxiety program (for ages 6 to 17); and
• Nighttime bedwetting (for ages 5 to 12).
Participants receive written materials and skill-demonstration videos (via handbooks or delivered by smart-website technology) as well as weekly telephone support from a coach. Overall, Strongest Families programs have a better than 85 per cent success rate of helping families overcome their presenting challenges.
“The Strongest Families team strives to provide quick access to quality services, providing flexible and convenient appointment times,” said Dr. Patricia Lingley-Pottie, president and CEO of Strongest Families Institute. “Our goal is to intervene early by equipping children, youth, and families with life skills they can use now and into the future.”
The only service of its kind in Canada, the Strongest Families programming is being delivered provincially in Nova Scotia and in Newfoundland and Labrador as well as in parts of Ontario and Alberta. Additionally, the program is available throughout Finland and was most recently launched in Hanoi, Vietnam. Last year, Strongest Families helped more than 3,200 families across Canada and overseas.
On Prince Edward Island, the program represents an investment of $100,000 annually, funded from within Health PEI’s Mental Health and Addictions division.
For more information visit  Mental Health Services, and Strongest Families Institute

Le présent communiqué sera disponible en français d’ici un jour ouvrable au Nouvelles.
Media contact:
Amanda Hamel
Senior Communications Officer
Health PEI
(902) 368-6135

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