Thanking our supporters at the Hope for Mental Health event

Thanking our supporters at the Hope for Mental Health event

by Betty Valentine, Board Chair

On Giving Tuesday, November 29, Waypoint hosted its first Hope for Mental HealthBetty Valentine recognition event; bringing together donors, event sponsors, partners, volunteers and employers who support our clients to kick off the Christmas season, share some refreshments, and hear how their giving has made a difference. 

Our guests heard from two staff members who are also hospital volunteers about why they support the hospital and how small acts of giving can truly change lives. 

Melissa Robinson, a recreation therapist who is now working on our electronic health record implementation shared “It’s difficult for me to truly explain the wonderful things our donors have made happen, but I can share that I’ve seen it foster hope, create experiences and memories, help people reconnect with their inner child, find a new passion and help them in their journey of recovery.”

JoAnn Pelletier-Bressette, clinical manager of the seniors program expressed her appreciation to the group by sharing how the purchase of a sit-stand lift has enabled the team to care for patients in a dignified way, reduce risks and make a positive difference in their future health outcomes.

After I listened to Melissa and JoAnn share stories of how donations have helped improve the lives of Waypoint patients and clients, I was happy to share that Waypoint raised $176,000 last year.

With that money we were able to purchase a centrifuge for our lab, a patient lift for the seniors program and a vital signs monitor for our electroconvulsive therapy suite, ensuring clients using this service now have the latest and up-to-date monitoring system. We also provided three full capacity, two-day Mental Health First Aid training sessions for our staff and members of the community. 

The comfort and safety of our patients was dramatically improved with much needed accessible washroom renovations on some clinical units, and the funds are also helping to pay for the technology to support our new electronic health record.

It was also a fantastic year in supporting our efforts to fight stigma and discrimination with our third soldMelissa Robinson and JoAnn Pelletier-Bressette out fundraising dinner, a standing–room only Annual General Meeting, more than 200 participants for the second annual Mental Health in Motion and 62 clients being placed in work experiences and jobs since April. 

Seeing your donations in action and the hope they inspire is truly humbling. If you supported Waypoint in any way this year, I’d like to say thank you from the bottom of my heart, we couldn’t do everything that needs to be done without you.

This Christmas season, I encourage you to find the cause that speaks to you and support it, whether with your time or money, and know that you are making a difference. 

I also invite you to mark your calendar for March 24, 2017 when Waypoint will host Séan McCann as the special guest at our fourth annual fundraising dinner. Séan is an addiction survivor and founding member of the east coast band Great Big Sea. He uses music as therapy and offers a great story of surviving abuse, becoming sober and leaving the band to make a difference in the world.