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2020 CMHO Virtual Conference

Nov 23 – Dec 4



While not being able to gather in person this year, we wanted to create the opportunity for the sector to come together to talk about innovating and advancing key priorities in child and youth mental health.

Over two weeks, we held 18 webinar sessions that brought together over 1500 people from across the province. See below for the webinar recordings and slides. If you do not see a particular session and slides/recording linked below, that is because it is not available to share. 


We invite you to watch this land spirit acknowledgement video. Gerard Sagassige and Caralyn Quan share Indigenous teachings, including land spirit acknowledgment and a short breathing exercise. 

 Session Recordings & Slides

All of the recordings and slides we are able to share are linked below.
If you do not see a particular session below or the webinar/slide link is missing, it is because it is not available.

Building CYMH’s Capacity in Autism and Mental Health

Speakers: Dr. Jonathan Weiss, Cathy Lonergan, Dr. Laura Goodman, Chris Clattenburg

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It is well known that children and adolescents with autism experience high rates of mental health problems, such as anxiety, depression, and behavioural issues (up to 50%-70%). Although evidence-based psychotherapy that addresses mental health problems in youth without autism has been shown to be effective for youth with autism (e.g., cognitive behaviour therapy), autistic youth are less likely to receive these interventions. Clinicians often report concerns about treating youth with neurodevelopmental conditions, like autism or ADHD. Therapists training can improve the accessibility and delivery of evidence-based psychotherapy for clients with autism. The current panel will present results from a collaborative mental health clinician survey that describes therapist confidence, attitudes, knowledge, and intentions to treat clients with autism and with ADHD, which can inform training initiatives. The panelists, who come from three children’s mental health agencies, will discuss the results and outline the possible next steps for training and capacity building.

Building Stronger Bridges: Successful Transitions from Child Mental Health Services

Speakers: Kristin Cleverley, Emma McCann

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In this session, you will:

  • Learn about a national study identifying priorities in youth mental health transitions with youth, parents/caregivers, and clinicians/administrators.
  • Understand the core components of successful mental health transitions prioritized by these stakeholder groups.
  • Discuss the implementation of core components through transition policies and interventions, including key tools and resources to support their adaptation in your context.

Building Our Resilience Beyond COVID: How to Maximize Meaning, Motivation and Better Mental Health at Work and in Life

Speaker: Stephen de Groot

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Employees have demonstrated optimal performance and resilience in the face of adversity, and challenging circumstances.

What’s the difference between those getting up or giving up? Meaning and a meaningful experience with one or more aspects of their work!

Join author and human behaviour enthusiast, Stephen de Groot as he shares the true forces behind employee motivation, mental health, and overall resilience. This seminar will demonstrate how we can simplify what matters most and uncover key strategies to access and activate meaning and meaningful experiences as a means for optimizing our own and other’s motivation and mental health at work and in life; during and long beyond this storm.

Participants will:

  • Simplify What Matters Most – Connect with Purpose & Preferred Outcomes.
  • Learn about the True Forces of Meaning, Motivation & Mental Health.
  • Identify and Learn to Stop the 5 Killers of Motivation and Morale.
  • Leverage Strategies to Strengthen Mental Health & Resilience Immediately.
  • Learn Key Employee and Leader Strategies for Measuring and Maximizing Meaning.

Communications, Culture, Connections: How To Build A Strong Team In A Virtual World

Speaker: Michele Sparling

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Since March, we have seen a huge global shift in how we work. Virtual and remote working have become a key part of our operations. But how can we stay connected when there’s no gathering around the water cooler, and at a time when being creative and collaborative are key? This session will tackle team building and fostering workplace culture in our new world.

Demystifying the DBT Process

Speaker: Dr. Carmen Lalonde

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In this session, you will:

  • Develop a practical and informed understanding of the steps to supporting clients in starting the journey of developing a life worth living.
  • Understand the core components of an adherent DBT program and how to ensure fidelity to the model.
  • Discuss and understand the match between intervention intensity and clinical complexity.

Equity Issues in CYMH

Speakers: Javeed Sukhera, Youth Speakers

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Prioritizing mental health equity in access, service experiences, and outcomes is an urgent issue for the CYMH sector.

This session will present youth perspectives on equity issues in CYMH in five key categories:

1. Leadership
2. Work/Advocacy/Volunteer Environment
3. Experiences in Accessing CYMH Services
4. Systems
5. Networks

This will be followed by a presentation by Dr. Javeed Sukhera who will speak on understanding and addressing structural bias at leadership levels.

To close, Youth Advocates and Dr. Javeed Sukhera will participate in a moderated discussion.

Exploring a Canadian Youth Mental Health Apps Database

Speakers: Fae Johnstone (she/they), Lisa Lachance (she/they)

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Wisdom2Action (W2A) and RBC Future Launch are exploring the implementation of a youth mental health apps database in Canada – a virtual platform that young people, families and service providers can use to identify youth mental health apps that meet their needs. W2A is consulting with key stakeholders across Canada to identify what exactly a “Made in Canada” database might look like, to ensure it is useful and relevant to young people, families and service providers. Join us for an engaging and interactive session exploring what a Canadian youth mental health apps database could look like.

FASD and Mental Health: A Lifetime Relationship

Speakers: Rob More, Maude Champagne, Karen Moore   

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Today, most individuals with FASD have not been diagnosed and mental health practitioners are uniquely positioned to change these individual’s life trajectories. However, they are not always clear on how to best meet the needs of these children/youth and their families. In this session, Rob More (M.A., M.eD.), Maude Champagne (RSW, psychotherapist, Neuroscience PhD student), and Karen Moore (MA (Leadership), BA (SDS) ECE, RSW, Clinical Director), will share how to recognize when someone may have FASD and the diagnostic process, and emerging research on best practices for psychotherapy.

Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health: “It Takes a Village” – Part 1

Speaker: Jean Clinton 

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The first of our two-part series on the crucial role of cross-sectoral collaboration and innovation in Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health during the pandemic, this 60 minute session by Dr. Jean Clinton will present new research and insights on the importance of community-centric responses in promoting mental well-being during the early years.
This session will present the ways in which developmental stages in the early years are shaped and influenced by communities and will lay the foundation for Part 2 of “It Takes a Village” which will highlight new data and innovative responses in IECMH across sectors during COVID-19.

Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health: “It Takes a Village” – Part 2

Speakers: Dr. Chaya Kulkarni, Dr. James Reynolds, Dr. Diane Philipp

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The second of our two-part series on the crucial role of cross-sectoral collaboration and innovation in Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health during the pandemic, this session will feature a ‘fire-side chat’ bringing together leaders in IECMH.

Leaders will present new data, discuss current trends in IECMH through COVID-19 and highlight innovative community-centric and cross-sectoral responses.

This session will be moderated by Dr. Purnima Sundar from the Ontario Centre of Excellence for Child and Youth Mental Health.

Innovative Models of Mental Health and Primary Care Partnerships

Speakers: Mario Cappelli, Leanne Clarke, Kavita Mehta, Kellie Scott

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In this session, you will:

  • Understand the scope and role of primary care providers in mental health and addiction care for children and youth
  • Learn about a service delivery model developed by the Ontario Centre of Excellence for Child and Youth Mental Health to improve the integration of primary care and mental health care for children, youth, and their families
  • Have the opportunity to share your experiences, as CYMH agencies, interacting with the primary care sector

Promoting Healthy Relationships for Children’s Mental Health – a focus on latency age children

Speaker: Prof. Debra Pepler

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Dr. Pepler studies bullying. Her direct observation of bullying in schoolyards has changed how we help children deal with aggression towards their classmates. Her work also examines dating violence and online bullying.

Research to Improve Care for First Nations Children: An Example from Northwestern Ontario

Speaker: Chris Mushquash

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Community-based research and evaluation is important in improving mental health care. In this presentation, Dr. Mushquash will discuss a multi-year collaboration with an Indigenous service-delivery organization aimed at improving care for First Nations in Northwestern Ontario. Driven by community priorities, and grounded in Anishinabek values, embedding research and evaluation within systems of care has the potential to ensure that services are culturally- and contextually-appropriate, and above all, lead to improved outcomes.

Sailing the Storm: Self-Care in this Time of Pandemic

Speaker: Michele Sparling

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“We can’t change the direction of the wind, but we can learn to adjust our sails”. Being in the midst of the storm can make it hard to balance the burden of providing services while interacting in a world that is struggling to right itself. How do we find empathy and balance for ourselves and for others?

Strongest Families Institute: Bridging Service Gaps for Neurodiverse Children with Mental Health Issues

Speaker: Dr. Patricia Lingley-Pottie

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Neurodiverse children with co-morbid mental health challenges often do not receive timely, evidence-based services. Strongest Families Institute (SFI) provides customized care to address the specific challenges that neurodiverse children and their parents experience. Equipping them with skills to manage behavioural and anxiety related symptoms leads to improved parental stress and family relationships. Ontario specific data will demonstrate the positive impacts SFI’s distance online and telephone coached services have on children and families.

Virtual MH Walk-in Clinics: Lessons from Foundry BC

Speaker: Steven Mathias

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Our Virtual Care presentation will be spearheaded by Dr Steven Mathias. Dr. Mathias is an adolescent psychiatrist, an Assistant Professor at the University of British Columbia, and the Executive Director at Foundry. At Foundry, he oversaw the development of Foundry virtual services, which allows youth in need of mental health services to get support online. Dr Mathias will be giving a presentation based on his experience at Foundry, which will discuss the benefits of linking community services under a common brand. His presentation will particularly address the types of implementation challenges this presents as well as how it can impact outcome measurement, assessment tools, and client experience measures.

Thank you to our sponsor:

 The Ontario Centre of Excellence for Child and Youth Mental Health

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I register?
  • The sessions will be offered by Zoom Meetings.

  • Advance registration is required for each individual session through the links above

What are the fees?
  • This year, there are no registration fees for our virtual conference in recognition of all the hard work everyone has been doing through the pandemic!
Who are the sessions for?
  • The sessions are designed for community child and youth mental health leaders, clinicians and policymakers – but are open to anyone interested in child and youth mental health.
Will sessions be recorded?
  • Yes we will be recording the sessions and making them available for a period of time after the Conference.
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