Government Celebrates Partnership with Bell Let’s Talk

The Province has matched a $350,000 contribution from Bell Let’s Talk to support child and youth mental-health services in the province. A total of $700,000 will be donated to Strongest Families Institute, a not-for-profit organization founded in Nova Scotia which provides family-centred care.

Premier Stephen McNeil joined representatives from Bell Let’s Talk, Nova Scotia Health Authority, and the IWK Health Centre today, Jan. 20, to celebrate the donation.

“We commend Bell for all it’s doing to raise awareness about mental health and we’re excited to be a partner on such a great initiative,” said Premier McNeil. “Our contribution is a commitment to improving mental-health services for Nova Scotians.”

Bell announced a total of $1 million in donations to Strongest Families across Atlantic Canada. This will be matched proportionally by each province for a total of $2 million in the region. In Nova Scotia, the funding will come from the Nova Scotia Health Authority and the IWK Health Centre over multiple years.

“The Strongest Families Institute’s roots trace back to the IWK Health Centre, where it was first developed and tested,” said Tracy Kitch, president and CEO of the IWK Health Centre. “Seventeen years later, Strongest Families continues to deliver vital services to our province’s children and youth.”

“The services that Strongest Families provides are flexible and accessible to the people who need them,” said Janet Knox, president and CEO of the Nova Scotia Health Authority. “We’re pleased to partner with Bell Let’s Talk and the IWK to strengthen this important organization.”

“Strongest Families has a proven track record of providing evidence-based mental-health services for children and youth, and Bell Let’s Talk is pleased to partner with the provinces to expand their reach to more families across the Atlantic region,” said Mary Deacon, chair of Bell Let’s Talk. “We commend our government partners for their leadership and commitment to mental health. Working together, we can provide significant support for more young people and their families throughout Atlantic Canada.”

The Strongest Families Institute provides programs for children, youth and families dealing with mild to moderate mental health and other issues impacting health and well-being. They provide timely, accessible care to families by teaching skills through a unique distance-coaching approach that supports families over the phone and Internet in the comfort and privacy of their own home.

“Strongest Families has been designed to remove barriers to care,” said Dr. Patricia Lingley-Pottie, president and CEO, Strongest Families Institute. “There is no need to travel or take time from work or school, and appointments are scheduled at convenient times.

“Our outcomes are strong, families report high satisfaction and the drop-out rate is less than 10 per cent. We help people when and where they need it, and we thank Bell Let’s Talk and the provincial governments for supporting us.”