This initiative aims to understand and improve the experiences of the children, youth and families accessing mental health services in Dufferin Wellington 

Mental health services are not always what they could be. We know that you may wait to get into services that you need, have difficulty transitioning between services, or struggle to access the services that work best for you or your child. While there are countless well-meaning, skilled, and compassionate staff working to provide the best possible care and support, there are many gaps and obstacles that can be improved. This project aims to understand what it's like for those accessing child and youth mental health services so that we can find ways to improve over the coming months and years. 

As part of the province-wide Moving on Mental Health initiative, the Canadian Mental Health Association of Waterloo Wellington Dufferin (CMHA WWD) is collaborating with Overlap, and other service partners to understand and improve the experiences of those accessing child and youth mental health services in the area. 

Phase One of this initiative was completed in March 2016, and focused on understanding the experiences of children, youth and families with mental health needs in Dufferin Wellington. Phase Two launched in April 2016, and is focused on action — addressing gaps in the system through prototyping possible solutions and testing them with the people who would use them.  

Phase One: Insights

November 2015 - March 2016

The majority of this phase was spent engaging with two groups: the children, youth and families who access mental health services; and the people who provide these services. This work used tools and workshops including journey mapping, stakeholder labs, interviews, and online surveys to get a deep understanding of the needs of families, layered within the context of the system. Based on what was learned, a common vision for the child and youth mental health system in Wellington Dufferin was created, and three priority action areas were identified.

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Phase Two: Action

April 2016 - MARCH 2017

Phase Two: Action is about addressing gaps and needs that were identified in Phase One. The Moving on Mental Health Steering Committee and its Prototyping Team are working on bringing possible solutions to life throughout 2016 and beyond. Throughout this phase, they will be generating and evolving ideas to improve the system, prototyping these ideas, and testing them with people effected by the problem. (Don't know what some of this design jargon means? Take a look at our design jargon glossary). 

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