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Month: June 2017

New Victoria hub to provide more mental health supports for area youth

Integrated health facility to open downtown this fall. Seven years ago, Barbara Thompson began noticing a troubling trend affecting the city’s youth. More individuals were coming into the Victoria Youth Clinic, but rather than accessing primary services such as overall well-being support and sexual education, they were seeking help for anxiety, depression, stress and substance use, caused by struggles with school, family dynamics, bullying and peer pressure. Last year alone, the clinic saw more than 3,000 patients, more than half of whom accessed care for mental health or substance abuse support. “It’s astounding. I think it’s really troubling for us … It’s becoming a more common theme that we’ve been able to see throughout the health-care system,” said Thompson, the clinic’s executive director. “There’s a lot of instant pressure to fit in and try and be a youth.” The numbers spurred the clinic, in partnership with NEED2 Suicide Prevention and Education Society, Island Health’s Early Psychosis Intervention team and the Children’s Health Foundation of Vancouver Island, to develop and launch a new mental health care hub for youth and their families in downtown Victoria. The hub, to be located at 818 Douglas St., will act as a one-stop shop, bringing…

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