ACCESS Open Minds opens doors at CLSC Park-Extension
CLSC Park-Extension joined a cross-Canada program that provides engaging and non-stigmatizing mental health care to community youths.
ACCESS Open Minds is an innovative mental healthcare model that offers young people faster and more youth-friendly access to a wide array of services in the places they frequent. The program assesses the youths’ needs based on the geographic, cultural and sociodemographic contexts in which they live. That way, a youth in distress can be directed, without delays or interruption, to the most situation-appropriate mental health resources available. These can range from minimal psychological or social intervention, to specialized care.
In the coming months, the Park-Extension Open Minds team of social workers, psychologists, researchers and clinicians will work toward improving care in their multi-ethnic neighbourhood by strengthening collaboration between schools, community-based organizations and the healthcare system. The program also encourages involvement from families and carers, providing education and support when needed.
The October 17 launch of ACCESS Open Minds Park-Extension, in collaboration with the CIUSSS West-Central Montreal, was hosted by one of the youths who participates in the program at the CLSC. Guests were treated to a rap performance, and a gallery of artwork and huge fresco created during workshops, all by Park-Extension community youths.
Dr. Cécile Rousseau, the Scientific Director of SHERPA, was instrumental in bringing the program to CLSC Park-Extension, the first site in Quebec to incorporate the program into their mental health youth services. Also in attendance was the Open Minds Principal Investigator, Dr. Ashok Malla, a Professor at the McGill University Department of Psychiatry and Canada Research Chair in Early Psychosis.