Mental Health Commission of Canada shares knowledge with world leaders in mental health

Mar 07, 2013, 12:32 ET from Mental Health Commission of Canada

AUCKLAND, New Zealand, March 7, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) is sharing innovative Canadian approaches to mental health research with an international audience in New Zealand this week.

MHCC President and CEO Louise Bradley is among 300 leaders and experts in mental health from eight countries sharing best practices in mental health and disability services at the International Initiative for Mental Health Leadership (IIMHL) exchange in Auckland, New Zealand, March 7-8.

Bradley presented several initiatives and projects of the MHCC including;

  • The National Standard of Canada for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace, a voluntary approach to addressing workplace mental health for employees and employers, the first of its kind in the world.
  • Opening Minds, the largest systematic effort to reduce the stigma of mental illness in Canadian history.
  • At Home /Chez Soi, the world's largest research demonstration project using the "housing first" approach to reduce homelessness and improve mental health outcomes among people living with a mental health issue or illness.
  • SPARK Training Institute, a knowledge exchange workshop guiding participants through techniques for moving evidence-informed research in mental health, substance use and addictions more quickly into practice.

The seven countries of IIMHL gather every other year to share information about best practices in mental health and encourage greater collaboration. The MHCC has participated in IIMHL since 2007.

"I appreciate the opportunity to share what we've learned and interact with leaders from other countries to get valuable feedback. Each of us is working in the face of mutual challenges," said Bradley. "Growth in the visibility and awareness of mental health issues internationally can reduce stigma and improve the lives of people living with a mental health issue or illness."

In conjunction with the IIMHL exchange, the MHCC supported the development of SPARK in New Zealand earlier this week alongside Te Pou, a national centre that works to support the mental health, addiction and disability workforces. The MHCC also co-hosted a meeting of the International Knowledge Exchange Network for Mental Health (IKEN-MH) with Te Pou, to further international collaboration of moving mental health research into practice and policy.

"Te Pou is excited to be collaborating with the Mental Health Commission of Canada to bring a stronger focus on helping our New Zealand workforce bring evidence into practice rapidly", said Robyn Shearer, Te Pou Chief Executive.

Bradley and the MHCC will continue sharing information about Canada's role as a leader in mental health research next week at a two-day meeting hosted by the National Mental Health Commission of Australia in Sydney, Australia, including an event with Mario Ste-Marie, Consul General of Canada at the Canadian Consulate, highlighting recent Canadian mental health initiatives.

The Mental Health Commission of Canada is a catalyst for change. We are collaborating with hundreds of partners to change the attitudes of Canadians toward mental health problems and to improve services and support. Our goal is to help people who live with mental health problems and illnesses lead meaningful and productive lives. Together we spark change.

The Mental Health Commission of Canada is funded by Health Canada.

The views represented herein solely represent the views of the Mental Health Commission of Canada.
Production of this document is made possible through a financial contribution from Health Canada.

For further information:

Media Contact:
Kyle Marr, Senior Communication Specialist
Mental Health Commission of Canada
Office: (403) 385‐4050
Cell: (587) 226-8782

SOURCE Mental Health Commission of Canada