Seeking Balance and Harmony: Children’s Mental Health Week!

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Algoma Family Services (AFS) in partnership with Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), Nogdawindamin and Strong Minds have gone virtual to bring a number of activities and events across the District in recognition of Infant, Child, Youth, and Adult Mental Health week from May 3rd to May 9th, 2021.

Children’s Mental Health Week and Mental Health Awareness Week both occur in May. The purpose of the week is to raise awareness about mental health, share information on services and to reduce stigma. “One in five people will be challenged by their mental health, with 70% of mental health challenges emerging in adolescence. Currently, there are over 28,000 children in the province of Ontario waiting for service, and this has been exacerbated by the pandemic. We need more resources in terms of funding and staffing to ensure services are available when needed”, said Sandie Leith, Director of Services, Algoma Family Services.

Green is the symbolic colour in recognition of Children’s Mental Health Week. The communities in Algoma are encouraged to wear green ribbons and decorate your front window green. The Water Tower Inn will be lighting up green in recognition of the week. If you’d like to participate please take a picture of your decorated window or wearing green and tag AFS on Facebook or Instagram. #KidsCantWait #CMHW2021

The following is a list of activities/ events planned for the week of May 3rd. All activities/events will be held virtually and posted to Facebook and Instagram. The theme of the week is ‘Balance and Harmony’

  • Drumming Monday May 3rd a drum performance by local First Nations youths.
  • Nature Scavenger Hunt – check out facebook/instagram for daily tasks.
  • Random Acts of Kindess – check out facebook for daily inspiration.
  • Infant Mental Health events
    • Tuesday May 4th Facebook Mom and Baby Yoga 10 am- 11 am.
    • Wednesday, May 5th Zoom 10 am -11:30 am- Balancing our Trays: How to promote balance and harmony through a lens of self regulation.
      Meeting ID: 641 2326 4714 Password: 037114
  • Medicine Walk – One of the Elder’s at Nogdawindamin will share some knowledge on the natural medicines found within the Baawaating Area (Sault Ste Marie Area).
  • Family Fun Fitness Friday May 7th at 6:30 pm Join Lori, Amanda and Natalie for a 60 minute workout live on Zoom. Meeting ID: 641 4383 1451 Password: 236802
  • Balance and Harmony Virtual Concert Saturday May 8th at 7 pm. Past performers bring new material in a virtual presentation featuring Spencer Pine, Joley Gough, Madi Schomogyi, Tianna Legacy.
  • 4th Annual Strong Minds Virtual 5K Run Saturday, May 8th in Your own neighborhood, backyard, a nearby trail or on a treadmill to register please visit Strong Minds – Run for Change
  • Daily Daily Fact or Figure from Children’s Mental Health Ontario

“I would like to extend on behalf of the AFS Board and Leadership team our great appreciation to the Children’s Mental Health Week Planning Committee and our community partners for their awesome work in planning these great activities. The pandemic is taking a toll on everyone’s mental health. We are certainly seeing this in the increased demand for our services. We greatly encourage the community to join in on these activities, have some fun, learn more about mental health and the services available. Your participation goes a long way in reducing the stigma associated with mental health. Remember your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Let’s get, Loud for Mental Health!”, said Ali Juma, CEO, Algoma Family Services.

To learn more about Children’s Mental Health Week please visit the Children’s Mental Health Ontario website or the Canadian Mental Health Association website for information on adult mental health. Be sure to check out the Algoma Family Services Facebook page.