The Government of Saskatchewan is providing significant funding to implement training for Community Based Organizations (CBO’s) who are providing mental health and addictions services through the health system.
A one-time grant of $250,000 is being made to the Centre for Addictions and Mental Health (CAMH) to deliver the virtual training to CBO’s.
Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Swift Current MLA, Everett Hindley, said that the government is taking steps to ensure that all eligible CBO’s have access to the training.
“There's a certain number of CBO’s that are eligible and what we’ve tried to do is to make sure to target this initiative to those CBO’s that provide mental health and addiction services as part of the publicly funded health system,” he explained. “So, there's a certain list there of CBOs and what we're doing is we're actually sending letters to the eligible CBO’s with specific details on how to enroll, should they be interested.”
Groups and Organizations such as the Canadian Mental Health Association, Mobile Crisis Services, Family Services Saskatchewan, and the Southwest Youth Emergency Shelter, among many others, are examples of Community Based Organizations.
Hindley added that the partnership between the Government of Saskatchewan and the CAMH, the largest mental health teaching hospital in Canada, is a massive asset in the battle to end the stigma around mental health and addiction as well as provide adequate resources.
“It's actually one of the world leading research centers, in this field,” he said. “They're affiliated with the University of Toronto, with over 3000 physicians. They have clinicians as well, researchers, educators, and support staff, and they'll offer a number of different types of training programs to the CBO’s who register.”
Some of the pre-approved courses provided by the CAMH include basic pharmacology, collaborating with families affected by concurrent disorders, fundamentals of addiction, fundamentals of mental health, foundations of practice, and understanding stigma.
Hindley stated that that the Saskatchewan Government is committed to the focus of mental health in our province.
“I think it's important, just you know, given the world that we're in nowadays, we as a provincial government to continue to put record funding and record dollars into both mental health and also addictions,” he said.” “Combined, we're investing roughly $470 million into mental health and addiction supports and services in this year's budget. And that's, you know, more than last year, more than the budget year before that.”
This particular investment will provide 350 virtual training seats for CBO’s across the province.
Community Based Organizations were able to start registering their staff as of May 2.
The Government of Saskatchewan recently announced an increase of $9.5 million toward mental health and addictions treatment for the 2022-23 budget. With the funding in 2022-23, the government has invested over $92 million in targeted initiatives in mental health and addictions since 2018.