Thanks to Bell Let’s Talk Day, issues around mental health will be top of mind for many Canadians on Jan. 25. For our part, Children’s Mental Health Ontario encourages youth, parents and community leaders to contribute to the conversation and share their stories on this important day.

Our CEO, Kim Moran and her daughter, Lauren, plan to appear on The Social on CTV on Wednesday to share their personal story with mental health and having to wait for lifesaving treatment. Also today, Kim will appear on a panel discussion on TVO’s The Agenda to discuss the devastating impact that chronic underfunding of children’s mental health is having on children, youth and families. The panel will also look at potential solutions.

It is critical that we raise our voices for children’s mental health. In the last year, more than 120,000 Ontario children and youth were treated for a mental illness at Children’s Mental Health Centres. These are just the ones who were brave enough or fortunate enough to find treatment. Kids as young as six are suffering from and trying to cope with serious mental health issues.
 
Children and youth in urgent need of mental healthcare are waiting up to 1.5 years for treatment in some parts of the province, and more than 12,000 are on waiting lists. Our kids can’t wait any longer for the mental healthcare they urgently need.

While CMHO values the importance of raising our voices on Bell Let’s Talk Day, we also encourage all of you to take further action by sharing your stories with the Ontario government. We have prepared a template that is easy for anyone to email our government leaders: Template Letter. Let Ontario know that #kidscantwait.