Dr. Jean Hughes (Nursing) in collaboration with the Canadian Mental Health Association, Nova Scotia Division, was recently awarded 3.1 million dollars to support a mental health project for school-aged children. The funding will be used in further developing, implementing and evaluating the CMHA’s “Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies (PATH)” Program. As part of the “Improving the Emotional and Social Health of Children in their Community: Implications for Population Health” project, this school-based initiative aims to help children improve their social relations, problem solving skills and academic performance. The project targets children aged 6 to 12, as well as parents, teachers and community partners and will be implemented in schools across Nova Scotia, Manitoba and Alberta.
“Helping to equip children with the ability to deal with difficult situations goes a long way toward improving their mental health” said Dr. Hughes. “It is also important that we help increase awareness among parents, teachers and caregivers about children’s mental health issues and give them the ability to respond appropriately to emotional issues.” Through the Declaration on Prevention and Promotion, Canada’s Ministers of Health have agreed to make health promotion a priority for action. The Government of Canada is committed to working with partners, within and outside the health sector, to design and implement new approaches to promote the health and well-being of Canada’s children and youth.