Peer support in Canada

Image: KBT in front of Krasman Centre in Alliston, Ontario.

KBT in front of Krasman Centre in Alliston, Ontario.

KBT traveled to Toronto at the end of September. The Canadians have made significant progress in terms of peer support, and we wanted to learn about how it is practiced in the country.

During the trip, we visited a long line of health institutions and centers. We got acquainted with psychologists, researchers and professors with different backgrounds and focus areas. This provided us with fruitful conversations with people of differing perspectives, as well as insight into the places’ process and management. Several of those we talked to expressed a desire to continue the correspondence, with the possibility of a future collaboration. Together with researchers at McMaster University, we have made applications for a project in which to conduct a comparative analysis of peer support specialists in Norway and Canada.

These are the places we visited:

At Stella’s Place, people in the ages of 16 – 29 struggling with psychological problems can come to learn about how to get ahead, and receive the help that they need. Professional health personnel and peer support specialists work together to offer services and courses to help them on their feet.

Ontario Peer Development Initiative is an “organization of organizations”, consisting of consumer/survivor initiatives and peer support organizations across Ontario. OPDI works in training and certification of peer support specialists.

Krasman Centre is a user driven center offering a myriad of recovery-based programs and services.

Canadian Mental Health Association is a voluntary foundation conducting services, evaluations and development work across Canada.

CES Ontario is a union employing over 400 evaluators, working on services and businesses health- and social sector.

Image: Niagara
In front of the Niagara