Local Mental Health Sector Support Programs and Resources

Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens chaired an important dialogue today with area mental health advocates and specialists, calling attention to the importance of establishing coping strategies throughout the pandemic’s ongoing second wave.

As Windsor and Ontario brace for a challenging winter, it is fair and normal for residents to experience increased anxiety and a range of complex emotions associated with COVID-19’s impact on our daily lives and relationships.

It is important to keep in mind that everyone, regardless of age, gender or stage of life, may be experiencing difficulties at this time, and it is that much more important to consider establishing personal strategies to support individual needs:

  • Check in on loved ones and friends;
  • If you are a parent, guardian or caretaker, take note to monitor your own condition as well as the condition of those in your care;
  • Establish healthy patterns and focus on activities that bring you happiness;
  • Create a “winter checklist” of local activities, and even household chores, that require your attention;
  • Take small daily actions, such as a family walk after dinner, regardless of temperature, to remain active;
  • Plan short and frequent phone calls or video chats with friends and family;
  • Plan for post-pandemic life, for example, planning what your next trip or holiday might be after this crisis has passed; and
  • Seek out advice from experts if you are feeling symptoms of depression, anxiety or hopelessness.

While the entire world is coping with the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, it is crucial to remember the importance of individual and daily actions to maintain mental health and resilience during this challenging time. Above all, be open-minded to seeking support for yourself and those around you to ensure that you have the benefit of advice and coping mechanisms.


“For all those who might continue to hold on to stigma associated with mental health and wellbeing, now is certainly the time to let that go. As a community and as individuals, we need to be mindful of the impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on all of us—and work together to take the steps necessary to address these challenges. Above all, never be shy about asking for help.”
Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens

“We are currently living through a time in our history where we have had no training. It’s been hard—hard on our relationships, hard our bodies and especially hard on our minds. Part of getting through the affects of this pandemic has been recognizing these challenges while also giving ourselves permission to accept that we may need some extra support. Today’s conversation helps to ensure our community knows that these supports are in place and accessible. Our teams, whether those at HDGH or community partners, will ensure you are provided with the mental health help you need.”
– Janice Kaffer, President & CEO, Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare (HDGH)

“The impact of social isolation, loss of normal routines and pleasures, and stress of the unknown is having an impact on the wellbeing of our community. Maintaining the wellness of body, mind and spirit during these unprecedented times is so important. We are thankful for the many providers across the community who have come together in new and innovative ways to continue to deliver programs and services to support our collective wellbeing.”
– Claudia den Boer, CEO, Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), Windsor Essex County Branch (WECB)

“Now more than ever, it is important to engage in this continued community dialogue about mental wellbeing. We commend the mayor for championing this important conversation. The pandemic has highlighted the importance of our agency to be responsive and immediate with our supports and services. Family Services and our community partners are committed to ensuring people get the help they need when they need it.”
– Joyce Zuk, Executive Director, Family Services Windsor-Essex

“These unprecedented times have created the opportunity for innovative and collaborative care to serve our most vulnerable population both in person and virtually. Our flexibility has extended to meet the community’s needs for addiction treatment to include opiate-dependent men as well as the unmet needs of family members who are reeling from a loved one’s addiction and co-existing mental health condition such as depression and anxiety. COVID has only exacerbated and intensified these problems and left many crippled with fear and unable to cope. These have been difficult times for all of us, but it is important to stress that the House of Sophrosyne and our community partners are here to help, and we are just a phone call away.”
– Karen Waddell, Executive Director, House of Sophrosyne

Key Local Support Links:

CMHA’s On the Front Lines comprehensive list of mental health resources in the community.

HDGH Mental Health and Addictions www.hdgh.org
General Inquires 519-257-5111
Community Crisis (24/7) 519-973-4435
Child & Youth Mental Health Supports – Starting Point Counselling Clinic 519-257-5437 (KIDS)
Child & Youth Mental Health Supports – General Inquires 519-257-5215

Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) www.windsoressex.cmha.ca
Mental Health & Addictions Urgent Care Centre 519-257-5111

Family Services Windsor-Essex www.fswe.ca 
Windsor-Essex Counselling Support Line 519-946-3277 or 1-877-451-1055 (24/7)

House of Sophrosyne - Lisa Tayfour Building for Recovery www.sophrosyne.ca
Residential 519-252-2711 ext. 100; Non-Residential 519-252-2711 ext. 115

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