/New funding to enhance virtual mental health services

New funding to enhance virtual mental health services

By Jenn Watt

Funding provided to Haliburton Highlands Health Services through the Emergency Community Support Fund will improve access to mental health services for vulnerable members of the community HHHS CEO Carolyn Plummer said in a letter to the community.

“This funding will be used by HHHS and community partners to enhance access to virtual mental health services for vulnerable members of our community” Plummer wrote in the letter dated July 3.

Three community organizations have received the federal funding in the latest round dispersed by the United Way City of Kawartha Lakes: Point in Time HHHS and SIRCH.

Point in Time received $20000 for the youth hub; SIRCH received $15000 for Community Kitchen; and HHHS received nearly $20000 for its virtual mental health support.

Plummer had been issuing letters to the community weekly when preparation for the COVID-19 pandemic was first happening in Haliburton County. In recent weeks she has reduced the frequency of letters to biweekly.

On July 3 she focused on mental health telling community members that it is “natural to experience periods of stress anxiety fear sadness frustration helplessness isolation difficulty sleeping or [concentrating] or physical symptoms such as increased heart rate upset stomach or low energy.”

The website haliburtoncares.ca includes a list of local service providers that can help with mental health including counselling and treatment. You can also call the Community Support Services response team which is a service of HHHS at 705-457-2941 or text 705-457-0016 from Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. You can also email infocc@hhhs.ca.

Online mental health supports include wellnesstogether.ca and bigwhitewall.ca.

Health-care workers can access resources at camh.ca/covid19HCW as well as from Ontario Shores at ontarioshores.ca/hcwassist.