Call. Talk. Connect.
This mental health support awareness campaign, featuring people with lived-experience and YSSN staff, aims to raise awareness around local supports available to people in crisis or who need help connecting to mental health and addictions services.
Each week we will feature a new anonymous story, images, and how you can connect and donate to these local supports.
From hopelessness to where I am today~a YSSN client
I was in bad shape–drug and alcohol addictions, full of fear and seriously depressed–suicidal thoughts, homeless, no friends, feeling totally hopeless.
Then I met someone who connected me to York Support Services Network (YSSN). I called and was able to get a case manager.
What I would tell others facing mental health challenges
YSSN helped me go from hopelessness to where I am today which is no comparison–I’ve never been happier in my life than I am today!
All the agencies and services I was involved with helped me discover who I am and my true potential.
I went from hating myself and the world to liking myself and being proud of what I have accomplished. I now feel I belong in this world as a productive member of society.
My experience with YSSN programs and services
- Taught me how to manage my finances (e.g. pay rent), and life skills such as doing the laundry, grocery shopping, meal planning, keep track of appointments.
- Advocated on my behalf to move from receiving Ontario Works to applying for Ontario Disability Support Program and helped me through the appeal process when I was denied at first.
- Apply for CPP and subsidized housing—which I moved into last year.
- Linked me to groups, services and programs such as Addictions Services York Region (ASYR), the York Region Abuse Program, the Smoking Cessation program, WRAP®, and Dialectical Behaviour Support.
- Access OSAP (and negotiate a repayment plan) so that I could attend Everest College, where I received my diploma in the Addiction and Community Services Worker Program.
- Get through a serious car accident and navigate an insurance settlement case, and overcome the depression and loss of independence that occurred after the accident.
- Overcome many of my fears and increased my independence immensely to the point I was awarded the DREAM award – for overcoming so many obstacles.
- Encouraged me even when I couldn’t hold my head up.
- Coaching around advocating for myself so I am able to navigate many systems on my own now.
Now I'm able to give back
Because of this support I have been able to do facilitation in substance abuse programs NA, AA, and am involved in YSSN’s Up Hub initiative, as well as, the Heart of the Matter Peer Support Group.
Connecting to Services
If you are 16 years of age and older, are struggling with a mental health need and/or addiction, or have a dual diagnosis (mental illness and developmental disability), we can help.
We offer individualized support through our case management, crisis response, and peer support services and can help you connect to community services.
Eligibility and Applying for Services
I want to support this campaign!
You can help people facing mental health challenges learn about and get access to more local supports and services by sharing these stories via social media. You can also help us provide more programs and services to help those in need by making a financial contribution. Please click on the Donate Now button below to support our clients and this important campaign.Donate Now