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CAMH Stories Centre for Addiction
and Mental Health

Dr. Branka Agic, a Torontonian who will change the city in 2017

TORONTO, January 17, 2017 - In case you missed it, Dr. Branka Agic, Manager of Health Equity at CAMH, was featured as part of CBC Metro Morning’s Who’s Next series, which profiles exceptional individuals working to make Toronto better this year.

Dr. Branka Agic
Nominated by Dr. Kwame McKenzie, Medical Director of Health Equity at CAMH, the pair was interviewed by CBC Radio Host Matt Galloway earlier this week.

“Last year, she launched the first strategy to improve the mental health of immigrants, refugees and ethnocultural groups with the Mental Health Commission of Canada,” Dr. McKenzie said on Metro Morning. “She’s been slowly but surely helping people move forward.”

The Refugee Mental Health Project is now national

There’s more to celebrate. In late 2016, Drs. Agic and McKenzie received federal funding from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, which will be used for the Refugee Mental Health Project to train service providers across Canada on how to more effectively provide mental health promotion, treatment and support to Syrian refugee clients.

The training and related activities are completely web-based; this includes courses, a community of practice, toolkit, webinars and a panel of subject matter experts on-hand to answer inquiries via discussion boards. In addition to activities being easily accessible across the country, service providers enroll in the courses at no cost to them. The aim is to equip health, settlement and social service providers with the knowledge, skills and enhanced professional collaboration networks for addressing the mental health needs of Syrian and other refugees who resettle in their communities.

A big, national impact early on

This is the first year of the project’s national implementation and interest is high. In the first three weeks after it launched across the country, nearly all of the courses’ 1,000 spots were filled and waitlists opened for many provinces.

The Refugee Mental Health Project’s online training, knowledge-sharing and community-building activities have been offered for free to Ontario-based service providers since 2012. Over 4,000 Ontario front line service providers, to date, have enrolled in these courses.

For more information, please visit the Refugee Mental Health Project website. And for questions about the project itself, please email RMHproject@camh.ca

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