What Do We Do?

CAMH's newly redeveloped Queen Street West campus is home to the Child, Youth and Family Program. (Photo by Vince Talota/Toronto Star)

CAMH’s newly redeveloped Queen Street West campus is home to the Child, Youth and Family Program. (Photo by Vince Talota/Toronto Star)

Over the past few days, we have seen a huge rise in the number of ‘likes’ on our Facebook page. When you are still a small organization, demonstrations of support such as that mean a whole lot—so thank you!

However, some of you might be wondering what exactly we do at Crown Jewels for Mental Health. We raise funds for mental health awareness, yes, but what exactly do we do and where does that money go?

Our main fundraising event is an annual gala that usually takes place in March. We have so far held five of these events, with each one proving more successful than the last. This coming year we will be hosting our sixth fundraiser, and we expect yet another increase in attendance.

All net proceeds from the gala’s ticket sales and silent auction are donated directly to the Child, Youth and Family Program at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), which “helps young people with mental health and/or addiction problems to function better at home, in school and with peers.” The program is run by a team of psychiatrists, nurses, psychologists, social workers, child and youth workers, and therapists who work in tandem with their patients and their families. Their various services make sure that every patient’s needs are met regardless of the situation they may be facing, offering individual, group, and family therapy options.

The goal behind our efforts is to eliminate the stigma associated with mental illness and addiction by encouraging open discussions at home, at school, and in the workplace. We believe that CAMH’s Child, Youth and Family Program addresses those ideals head-on and offers a level of expertise that is not easily found anywhere.

Furthermore, by expanding our reach through social media, we hope to connect with more people who may be in need of help—whether it’s for themselves or someone they know—and direct them to the appropriate resources. In turn, this also allows us to serve as a forum for the sharing of experiences and new developments in the field of mental health, which are key elements of raising awareness.

Most importantly, we would like to see mental health issues be treated with the same concern and respect as any other illness, rather than be dismissed as something that is not real or of consequence. Crown Jewels for Mental Health was founded in the memory of Rosario (Roy) Scalcione, whose death by suicide was very real to us and many other people. If we can prevent tragedies like Roy’s from happening to others, we will have done our job.

In that spirit, we thank you once again for joining our cause. Please spread the word and share your story if you can! The only way forward is together.

Source: Child, Youth and Family Services at CAMH.ca