Debora Van BrenkThe London Free Press
Date Published: Tuesday, October 30, 2012
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Their work could dramatically improve children’s mental health care in your neighbourhood and across the world.
And now it’s received a significant boost from London donors intent on bettering their community.
The London Community Foundation chipped in $100,000 to help build a set of standards that will help kids get good, timely mental health care.
“It has amazing implications worldwide,” said Shannon Stewart, program manager of research at London’s Child Parent Research Institute (CPRI).
She also leads international efforts for children’s mental health through a non-profit group called interRAI, which has 50 researchers in 32 countries around the world all working to connect the myriad of disconnected dots that form treatment protocols for children with mental illness.
“Right now, everybody has a homegrown assessment approach” — leading to long wait lists and fragmented services, she said.
The intent of the research is to develop common language and protocols that will reduce duplication and improve efficiency in children’s mental wellness. A similar protocol process has been developed and successfully used in geriatric care.
The $1-million research taking place here — several sources of funding have come forward to push it along — is being co-ordinated through local groups including CPRI and its volunteer organization, Thames Valley District school board and Madame Vanier Children’s Services.
Such partnerships were key considerations as the London Community Foundation announced its five recipients of community vitality grants Tuesday.
The grants total $500,000 and leverage $3.2 million worth of community-building efforts.
The foundation, a philanthropic group that uses the investment income from a larger endowment fund as it issues grants, received 35 funding requests totalling $1.7 million for this year’s grants.
It winnowed that number to five non-profit organizations, which received a total of $500,000.
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