Self Help provides services offered by people for people who have experienced a mental health and/or addiction issue. Curious about Self Help? Please click here to find out more about the programs and services Self Help provides.
Self Help provides:
- Self Help Recovery Centre
- Peer support
- Advocacy support
- Entrepreneurship services
- Spark of Brilliance
- The Centre for Excellence in Peer Support
Self Help’s vision:
A vision of society in which people are valued and honoured for their uniqueness and people with mental health and addiction issues are entitled to improve their quality of life and are entitled to citizenship rights and responsibilities.
History of Self Help:
In the late 1980’s, numerous Consumer Survivor Initiatives (CSI) were established across Ontario. These groups were mainly support by the Ontario Ministry of Health, as a contribution towards local mental health organizations.
In the Waterloo and Wellington areas, four CSI organizations were created: Cambridge Active Self Help (CASH), Depressive/Manic Depressive Association of W.R. (DMDAWR), Mutual Aid for Psychiatric Survivors (MAPS), and Waterloo Region Self Help (WRSH).
By 2000, many CSI’s across Ontario had disappeared or were facing uncertain futures. These issues led to discussions about local and creative funding.
In 2003, the four groups in the Waterloo and Wellington areas decided to form the Self Help Alliance in order to share staffing and resources. At this time, 2 of the 4 organizations had changed their names. DMDAWR became Mood Disorders Association Waterloo Region (MDAWR), while maps was now referred to as Wellington-Dufferin Self Help (WDSH). As this alliance proved to be very beneficial to the four organizations, in 2009 the decision was made to merge formally. Therefore, on June 22, 2009 the Self Help Alliance Waterloo Wellington became officially incorporated. Day to day operations of the sites have stayed very much the same, with each location maintaining the individual flavor of the community and individuals accessing services. The merger has allowed for a strong voice for those experiencing mental health and/or addiction issues and a better ability to share resources continued to provide support and services.
As of April 1, 2013 the Self Help services formally joined the new Canadian Mental Health Association Waterloo Wellington Branch. We believe this partnership will further see the enhancement and system support for peer roles within every juncture of the Addiction and Mental Health System.