KHLF 2017 Year-in-Review

Here is just some of what we achieved in 2017!

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  • We reached 27 hospitals and organizations in Canada offering Upopolis to their youth. The new hub and spoke model we developed allows community hospitals, organizations and camps to partner with us too.
  • 24 crew spaces are available for youth to join on Upopolis. What is a crew space? These are diagnosis specific spaces, where youth can meet others with their diagnosis and find information and links especially for them.
  • The Upopolis team expanded. Now we have four certified child life specialists with over 50 combined years’ experience- that is an amazing team for our partner hospitals and their youth to have access to.
  • Upopolis underwent a visual refresh. Yes, the platform now has a new look with five new themes for users to select. The new themes and features were an action item identified by the youth.
  • Upopolis youth established their own Youth Advisory Council. Having youth from across the country (and maybe further) working on the same projects- so much potential and expertise!!!!
  • We had more youth then ever join the Upopolis Volunteer & Leadership Program. Currently, we have 14 users across the country active on Upopolis as Upals and Umentors. Not only are they gaining volunteer hours, but their leadership and mentor skills are growing too!
  • The team hosted an exhibit at the Association of Child Life Professionals Annual Meeting. The team went out to meet with child life professionals outside of Canada to gage their interest in offering Upopolis to their patients. The team also hosted exhibits at the Florida Association of Child Life Professionals Conference and the Paediatric Diabetes Network Professional Development in Toronto, Ontario.
  • Each month the team sends 600+ users and health care professional a Upopolis programming newsletter, called Unews. This newsletter helps to keep front line staff at the hospital up to date on what’s happening on Upopolis, perfect for answering youth’s questions or building their knowledge for when inviting youth to create a Upopolis account. It’s a perfect way to help with youth engagement too!
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  • The Upedia Webinar Series brought in experts in pediatric palliative care, legacy building, mindfulness, research on the importance of online support groups and child advocacy.
  • Webinar attendance averaged 200 plus per webinar with attendees from all over the world.
  • A new certificate program for webinar participants was implemented that streamlines the certificate process for not only the users but Upedia as well.
  • Upedia hosted booth at the Association for Child Life Professionals (ACLP) conference in Las Vegas. The response was overwhelmingly positive. As a result we were featured as an amazing resource by the ACLP blog, and in their newsletter that reaches over 5000 Child Life Specialists!
  • Upedia reached over 1000 registered users and growing more every day!
  • Twitter followers increased by 180%!
  • We sent out a quarterly newsletter and monthly update to highlight new resources and happenings with Upedia to over 1200 recipients.
  • Upedia increased its database of resources by adding over 100 clinical resources and tools from various psychosocial domains. We also added a discussion board to highlight practical tools that Child Life Specialists can you use daily.

 

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  • We partnered with Raymond James as Umind's Presenting Sponsor
  • Further developed our partnership with Mohawk College; increased our student/faculty/alumni registration base, engaged professors in delivering webinars, and presented to staff and faculty in a number of programs within Community Services Department
  • Significantly grew the Umind membership base - with an increase of 54% over 2016
  • Significantly grew the Umind twitter follower base – with an increase of 63% over 2016
  • Completed 5 Umind webinars and increased overall attendance (up 49%) and satisfaction of attendees over 2016
  • Focused on ‘hot topic’ areas when building the online resource library (We added 301 new resources in 2017!)
  • Held initial conversations with the Dean of Social Services at Conestoga College to discuss how Umind can be used by the college which will continue in 2018

Umind Goals for 2018:

  • Increase membership by 80%
  • Continue to build our important partnership with Mohawk College; presenting to all Community Services faculty, and engaging at a student level to increase awareness of the platform and the number of those using and benefitting from Umind.
  • Continue to expand the Umind resource library – based on topics of interest brought forth by registered members and trends in the child and youth mental health realm

 

Raymond James Partners with Umind.ca To Help Deliver Canada’s Premiere Online Resource for Child & Youth Mental Health Care Professionals

Raymond James Partners with Umind.ca To Help Deliver Canada’s Premiere Online Resource for Child & Youth Mental Health Care Professionals

Toronto, Ontario… In a new and exciting partnership, investment dealer Raymond James Ltd., is now Presenting Sponsor of Umind.ca (Umind)– an international online community dedicated to helping child and youth mental health professionals, educators and student learners expand their expertise, collaborate and grow in their profession.  Umind accomplishes this through its vast library of resources, practical tools and online training opportunities for professionals in the mental health space. Developed by Kids’ Health Links Foundation (KHLF), in collaboration with Umind’s clinical partner Lutherwood, and supported by its academic partner Mohawk College, this unique platform breaks down resource silos to build a virtual community globally connected in their commitment to improve the lives of children and youth and their families living with mental health issues. Umind’s registered members include frontline and administrative child and youth mental health staff, health care professionals, educators, post-secondary students and other professionals working with children and families, representing over 300 organizations within Canada and internationally.

Raymond James’ partnership will help expand the Umind Webinar Series, which was created in 2014 in response to an expressed need by mental health professionals for more accessible and practice-specific professional development opportunities. In 2018, Umind webinars will include such critical topics as, ‘How to Support Children and Youth Questioning Their Gender Identity’, ‘Legalization of Marijuana and the Impact on the Mental Health System’, and ‘Grief and Trauma in Mental Health’. Raymond James’ sponsorship dollars will also help Umind continue to grow its online collection of over 950 practical tools, promising interventions and valuable resources developed by children’s mental health treatment centres across Canada.

“We are very excited about our partnership with Umind,” says Peter Kahnert, Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications and Marketing, “We look forward to working with the Umind team to grow this important resource to support children and youth living with mental illness and those professionals reaching out to help make a difference in the lives of many.”

According to the World Health Organization, 20 percent of the world’s children and youth have mental health disorders or issues.  This partnership comes at a time when the need for child and youth mental health information and resources has never been greater.

Kids’ Health Links Foundation Chairman and Co-founder, Basile Papaevangelou says, “It’s because of the heart and vision of companies like Raymond James that programs like Umind have a chance to fulfill their potential and make their greatest impact. Bridging business and social enterprise, this partnership is an example of what’s possible when companies step-up to the plate and partner with social services to help support the well-being of the communities in which they serve.”

 

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About Umind
Umind is a dynamic online community where mental health professionals access information, connect and share practical tools, knowledge, and training to help improve the lives of children and youth and their families living with mental health issues. It is an initiative launched and supported by Kids' Health Links Foundation (KHLF) and its clinical partner, Lutherwood. For more information, visit www.umind.ca.

About Lutherwood
For nearly 50 years, children, youth and their families have trusted Lutherwood’s mental health services to support them as they cope with serious behavioural, emotional and psychological challenges. The agency provides residential treatment and assessment, community and school-based support, counsels families, and operates a shelter for youth at risk of being homeless. For more information, please visit www.lutherwood.ca.

About Kids’ Health Links Foundation
Kids’ Health Links Foundation was founded by Basile Papaevangelou and his daughter Christina to foster initiatives focused on alleviating the stress, isolation and loneliness for kids and teens undergoing medical care so that they might be better able to overcome traumatic medical experiences. For more information about Kids’ Health Links Foundation please visit www.kidshealthlinks.org.

About Raymond James
Raymond James Financial, Inc. (NYSE: RJF) is a leading diversified financial services company providing wealth management for individual investors and families, capital markets, asset management, banking and other services to individuals, corporations and municipalities. The company has approximately 7,300 financial advisors in 3,000 locations throughout Canada, the United States and overseas. Total client assets under administration are US$693 billion. Public since 1983, the firm is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol RJF. Additional information is available at www.raymondjames.ca.

 

For more information, please contact:

Umind
Marni Harold
info@umind.ca                 
519-884-1666, ext. 1206

Kids' Health Links Foundation
Basile Papaevangelou
basile@kidshealthlinks.org
647-880-3037

F. Peter Kahnert
Raymond James Ltd.
peter.kahnert@raymondjames.ca
416-777-7052

Mohawk College Partnership Expands Access to Child & Youth Mental Health Resources for Students and Faculty

Mohawk College Partnership Expands Access to Child & Youth Mental Health Resources for Students and Faculty

Hamilton, Ontario… As part of a knowledge exchange initiative, Mohawk College has become an academic partner with Umind to provide access to and heighten awareness of child and youth mental health (CYMH) resources for students, faculty, graduates, community partners, and CYMH professionals across Canada and globally. Developed by Kids’ Health Links Foundation with Umind’s clinical partner Lutherwood, Umind is a dynamic online platform for child and youth mental health professionals to share resources, advice, tips and techniques.

Through this partnership, Umind will be incorporated within Mohawk College’s Human Services curriculum encompassing 17 programs, over 250 courses and nearly 1,000 graduates annually. For the 900 agencies working with the Human Services Department, this partnership provides an online platform where they can access and contribute CYMH resources.  Other benefits of partnership include the opportunity for Mohawk students and CYMH professionals to actively network, share information and ideas through Umind’s online discussion board and webinars.

“We are very excited about our partnership with Umind. We are in the business of providing the best learning opportunities for our students and this partnership with Umind will allow students to access more resource information on Children and Mental Health”, says Neil McMahon, Acting Dean, Faculty of Community & Urban Studies.

As Umind’s clinical partner, we are thrilled to work with Mohawk College to exchange resources, tools and techniques that encourage insight and professional development, and positively impact children, youth and families facing mental health challenges,” said Kathy Payette, Lutherwood Director Community Mental Health Services and Umind Ambassador.

According to the World Health Organization, 20% of the world’s children and youth have mental health disorders or issues.  This partnership comes at a time when the need for child and youth mental health information and resources has never been greater.

Says Kids’ Health Links Foundation co-founder Basile Papaevangelou, “Through this partnership, two of the child and youth mental health profession’s leading organizations will be working together to meaningfully and positively develop and share much needed resources for today’s professionals and the many Mohawk graduates poised to join the CYMH  profession.”

 

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About Mohawk College
Mohawk College’s Faculty of Community & Urban Studies is pleased to partner with KHLF, Lutherwood and Umind for faculty and students in the School of Human Services to be able to access child and youth mental health resources.

Mohawk College, rated the #1 college in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton area in student satisfaction for the last 6 years, is the college of choice for more than 14,000 full-time and 20,000 part-time students. For more information, visit www.mohawkcollege.ca.

About Umind
Umind is a dynamic online community where mental health professionals access information, connect and share practical tools, knowledge, and training to help improve the lives of children and youth and their families living with mental health issues. It is an initiative launched and supported by Kids' Health Links Foundation (KHLF) and its clinical partner, Lutherwood Institute for Children and Youth Mental Health. For more information, visit www.umind.ca.

About Lutherwood
Lutherwood is a not-for-profit health and social service organization that provides children’s mental health, employment and housing services to more than 16,600 people annually in Waterloo Region and Wellington County. For more information, visit www.lutherwood.ca 

About the Kids’ Health Links Foundation
The Kids’ Health Links Foundation was founded by Basile Papaevangelou and his daughter Christina to foster initiatives focused on alleviating the stress, isolation and loneliness for kids and teens undergoing medical care so that they might be better able to overcome traumatic medical experiences. For more information about Kids’ Health Links Foundation please visit: www.kidshealthlinks.org.

 

For more information, please contact:

Mohawk College                                                    Umind & Lutherwood                      Kids’ Health Links Foundation

Malorie Valade                                                        Marni Herold                                    April Ganong

malorie.valade@mohawkcollege.ca                      info@umind.ca                                  april@kidshealthlinks.org

905-575-1212, ext. 4466                                        519-884-1666, ext. 1206                  905-817-1717

 

Umind Selected as a Connected Site on New CAMH Portico Network

Umind is pleased to announce that it has been selected as one of the first independent Connected Sites on the new CAMH Portico Network launched on January 21st. The Portico Network, built by CAMH in partnership with Bell, is an exciting new network of addiction and mental health sites from across Canada comprised of three main components:

1.    The core Portico site, created and maintained by the team in Education at CAMH
2.    Partner sites that are hosted on the Portico platform, but are editorially independent
3.    Connected Sites, such as Umind.ca, that are independent sites included in Portico’s search results

As a Connected Site, Umind is listed on Portico with a short description and link, making it easy for Portico’s national audience to access Umind’s wealth of information, which includes 800+ practical tools and interventions available online to Canada’s child and youth mental health professional community.

“Umind’s niche is providing proven, practical resources to its registered members. Being selected as a Connected Site on the Portico Network is an honour,” says Kathy Payette, Umind Mental Health Ambassador and Director of Community Mental Health Services at Lutherwood. “We look forward to sharing these valuable resources with the Portico Network audience and working with the CAMH and Portico team as they grow this important initiative.” 

Visit www.umind.ca  and www.porticonetwork.ca and start connecting with the growing number of child and youth mental health professionals, groups and resources available on these dynamic online communities.

For more information about Umind, please contact Umind Program Manager and Children’s Mental Health Ambassador Marni Herold at info@umind.ca

KHLF opens applications for research project

KHLF is currently accepting applications from organizations who are interested in undertaking a research project to investigate online social networking among chronically ill youth.  With the significant rise in children and youth’s accessibility to wireless phones, text messaging, and online activities, there is also a growing rise in the use of social networking sites among children and youth.

The primary objective of this research grant is to increase the literature base examining the use of online support networks by chronically ill youth aged 10-18 years of age. Up to $40,000 in grant funding for research activities that take place over a 1 year (12 month) period is available. Organizations interested in applying can click here to access the KHLF 2015 Research Grant RFP and the KHLF Research Grant Application Form. If you have any questions, please email KHLF Program Director April Ganong at april@kidshealthlinks.org.

KHLF Welcomes Mary Jo Haddad to Its Board of Directors

 A VERY WARM WELCOME TO MARY JO HADDAD (Toronto, Ontario) The Kids’ Health Links Foundation (KHLF), an Ontario-based charitable organization, announces the election of Mary Jo Haddad to its board of directors. KHLF is dedicated to using technology to develop initiatives targeting the physical and mental health of children and youth.

President and CEO of The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) in Toronto until her retirement in December 2013, Haddad has made numerous contributions to children's health in Ontario and internationally. She brings her extensive experience in the healthcare field to build and expand upon the Foundation’s initiatives, devoted to furthering the health and well-being of paediatric patients and those who support them.

“Words are inadequate to express how honoured we are to welcome Mary Jo as a board member,” says KHLF Founder and Chairman, Basile Papaevangelou. “Her addition to the KHLF Board of Directors reflects KHLF's unrelenting commitment to finding the most innovative and very best leaders to guide our efforts to support the physical and mental health of children and youth."

An honours graduate of the Faculty of Nursing at the University of Windsor, Ms. Haddad earned her master’s degree in Health Science from the University of Toronto. She is an adjunct faculty member at the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto and at the University of Toronto Rotman School of Business, and she is a mentor for aspiring leaders from the Women's Executive Network and The Creative Institute for Toronto’s Young Leaders.

In 2013, she received the Contribution to Child Health Award of the Canadian Association of Paediatric Health Centres and the Grace Evelyn Simpson Reeves Award for Excellence in Career Achievement, The Hospital for Sick Children. In 2012, she received The Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, and was appointed a Member of the Order of Canada in 2010.

 

About the Kids’ Health Links Foundation

The Kids’ Health Links Foundation (KHLF) is a grassroots charity co-founded by Basile Papaevangelou and his daughter Christina in 2007. It was inspired by Christina’s near death as a result of a massive blood infection known as Toxic Shock Syndrome in 2002; and by the passing of her good friend Katy, in 2004 following a brave battle with cancer. Through these experiences, it became obvious to Basile and Christina that the isolation and lack of connection felt by both Christina and Katy during their hospitalizations were typical for hospitalized kids across Canada. KHLF was created to answer this need. The mission of the Foundation to use technology to help alleviate the stress and isolation of paediatric patients drives its initiatives. Today, these include

UPOPOLIS: The only private, secure and trusted social network for hospitalized kids and teens in Canada. It is offered, supported, hosted and updated at no cost to the institution or user. UPOPOLIS was recognized in November 2012 by the Canadian Health Informatics Association (CHIA). TELUS our partner was recognized for the CHIA Corporate Citizenship Award for their support of our innovation. UPOPOLIS can be found at eight (8) children’s hospitals and one kid’s mental health center across Canada.; Lutherwood Children’s Mental Health Centre, Kitchener, ON; McMaster Children’s Hospital, Hamilton, ON; The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids), Toronto, ON; Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, Toronto, ON; IWK Health Centre, Halifax, NS; BC Children’s Hospital, Vancouver, BC; Ste-Justine University Hospital Centre, Montréal, QC; Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO), Ottawa, ON: Children’s Hospital, London, ON. This year, UPOPOLIS will be implemented at Emily’s Children and Youth Hospice, Toronto and at 3 centres in Newfoundland and Labrador: Eastern Health Center for Youth Mental Health and Addictions, Paradise; Central Health Center for Youth Mental Health and Addictions Grand Falls-Windsor; and Janeway Children’s Health and Rehabilitation Centre, St. Johns.

WWW.UMIND.ca: An online community hosting a national community of practice; facilitating educational and mentoring opportunities within the network of children’s mental health treatment providers.

WWW.UPEDIA.ca: This peer-reviewed library holds child life resources and policies that have been generously contributed by children’s hospitals and pediatric centers. Contributions continue.

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