Parent & Caregiver
Family awareness and early identification are often the first steps to effective treatment for children and youth with mental health disorders. It’s easy to recognize when a child has a fever. But a child’s mental health is different. It can be difficult to distinguish between ‘normal’ problems that all children and adolescents experience from time to time, and behaviour that may be indicative of a mental health disorder.
Our goal is to share useful information to help you learn more about parenting and mental health issues.
The ABCs of Mental Health – Resources for Parents
Free web-based resource regarding children and adolescents aged 3 to 18. Drawing on information from expert advisors, the materials respond to parents’ most pressing concerns about children’s and adolescents’ mental health and behaviour problems at home. The information, in accessible, easy-to-use formats, is designed to help parents understand behaviours that cause them concern. It provides prevention and early intervention strategies to promote learning and mental health, and tips on finding help for children and adolescents with mental health problems.
Materials cover: practical suggestions for the prevention of mental health problems; the common behavioural and mental health problems that concern parents; early intervention strategies to use in the home; and appropriate responses to children and adolescents with mental health issues.
Rationale: Every day, parents see worrisome behaviours in children and adolescents and seek resource materials to help them understand the behaviours and learn effective approaches for managing them at home.
Mental Health Resource Materials: The materials have been written by experts in the field, based on evidence-informed practice. Each Chapter helps parents recognize behaviours that are appropriate for different ages and stages of development, behaviours that require further consideration, and behaviours that are serious enough to refer to a mental health specialist. Each chapter also provides a course of action for parents to follow for worrisome behaviours and potential mental health problems, taking into account the child or adolescent’s developmental stage, abilities/disabilities, cultural differences, and other life circumstances.
Families for Addiction Recovery
A national charity founded by parents of children who struggle, or have struggled, with problematic substance use associated with a concurrent mental health disorder. FAR offers free national, parent-to-parent support, for families struggling with addiction, privately by phone. If you are in the Toronto area, FAR also offers a free parent support group.
The Child Mind Institute
Centre of Knowledge Pamphlets
Safeguards Training for Children and Adult Services
Children’s mental health plays an important role in their development, education and overall health. Experts at The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) have developed a new mental health resource that provides credible, plain language content on children’s mental health.
Parents, teachers and healthcare providers can use this comprehensive educational tool to obtain information and support throughout the mental health journey. The resource includes evidence-based information on a range of topics.
Prevention and Early Intervention Program for Psychoses (PEPP) – Parent Support Group
Parents’ Lifelines of Eastern Ontario (PLEO)
Parents for Children’s Mental Health
Ontario Early Years Centres
Ontario Early Years Centres are places where parents and caregivers can:
- take part with their children in a range of programs and activities;
- get answers to questions;
- get information about programs and services that are available for young children and their families; and,
- talk to early years professionals as well as parents and caregivers in the community
Ontario Early Years Centres are funded by the Ministry of Education.