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CAMH Stories Centre for Addiction
and Mental Health

Innovative approaches to on-campus mental health

CAMH joined Ontario’s Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities Reza Moridi on World Mental Health Day, October 10 when he announced the extension of the province’s Mental Health Innovation Fund. The fund sponsors initiatives designed to support innovative approaches to on-campus mental health service delivery, and encourages knowledge sharing and best practices between institutions, mental health care providers, and the government.

Mental Health and Innovation group photo
(L to R) David Wiljer, MPP Han Dong,  Lucy Fromowitz, U of T, Minister Reza Moridi,  Kaleem Hawa, U of T student, Dr. Marcus Law, U of T

One of those initiatives is ThoughtSpot, a joint project with CAMH, the University of Toronto, Ryerson University, the Ontario College of Art and Design University and ConnexOntario.  

ThoughtSpot is an online interactive map designed by students, for students, in the Greater Toronto Area. The map allows students to easily identify and access health and wellness services, and discover resources that are relevant to their experiences.   The map shows students where to find supports, from legal clinics to health clubs, mental health counseling to parks and recreational centres.  The map already offers over 900 health and wellness spots across the GTA, from Ajax to Erin Mills, and is primed for more.

CAMH Senior Director, Transformational Education and Academic Advancement  David Wiljer says, "ThoughtSpot has been recognized by the province as an excellent example of what partnerships can do to help postsecondary students access the mental health services they need. We are very grateful to be a partner on this project, which is engaging students in the development of  meaningful solutions. In the creation of ThoughtSpot, CAMH Education had the unique opportunity to join forces with over 33 amazing young leaders from almost every discipline to improve mental health for all students."

David Wiljer
CAMH Senior Director, Transformational Education and Academic Advancement  David Wiljer

Hackathought

November 7-9, the ThoughtSpot team is partnering with the Ryerson Digital Media Zone (DMZ) for a three day event, called Hackathought.

Teams will be challenged to create mobile Apps for ThoughtSpot, and discover new ways for students and other users to contribute to the map using social media, mobile technologies and other innovative approaches.  Prizes range from $2500 cash to gym passes.

Hackathought will kick off with a panel of experts leading a discussion on the common issues for students surrounding mental health, held at the DMZ on November 7.

"We welcome all who are interested to join us, and together we will create mobile, sustainable and responsive tools to transform the way post-secondary students find and access mental health services." says Andrew Johnson, Manager, Client and Family Education at CAMH.

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