Mental health

Major projects

Mental health resources directory

The Mental Health Services Directory for Interveners Working with First Nations is an inventory of existing mental health services in the social and health regions with which the non-conventioned Quebec First Nations communities are affiliated. This directory allows First Nations to have a good understanding of the mental health resources available in the provincial network.

It was funded by the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch (FNIHB) for the Québec region through the Aboriginal Health Transition Fund (AHTF).

Project supporting the development of a continuum of mental health and dependency services for First Nations of Québec (Mental health and addictions collaborative arrangements)

Since 2006, numerous projects have highlighted the gap between FN health and that of the overall Canadian population.  They have also shown that there is a lack of mechanisms to facilitate access to mental health and addictions services for First Nations. To remedy this situation, two AHTF projects were carried out by the FNQLHSSC between 2009 and 2011. These gave rise to the creation of a Mental Health Services Directory  for the provincial network and the Report on the Development of a Mental Health Service Organization Model Among the First Nations of Quebec.

These two projects established the bases of the current project funded by the Health Services Integration Fund (HSIF): Project supporting the development of a continuum of mental health and dependency services for First Nations of Québec. The objective of this project is to improve accessibility and continuity in mental health and addictions services for First Nations through the development and establishment of collaborative arrangements between the non-conventioned communities in Québec and the health and social services centres (HSSC). The collaborative agreements are developed based on the needs identified, local realities and resources available. The purpose of implementing collaborative arrangements is also to inform actors in the Québec health and social services network about the First Nations realities and culture in order to provide services that are better adapted to the culture.

The FNQLHSSC is currently assisting eleven communities in Abitibi-Témiscamingue and the North Shore in the implementation of collaborative arrangements with the health and social services center(s) in each region.  These communities are: Lac Simon, Kitcisakik, Pikogan, Eagle Village, Timiskaming, Pessamit, Uashat mak Mani Utenam, Ekuanitshit, Nutashkuan, Unamen Shipu and Pakua Shipi. Numerous communities (7) located in other health and social services regions in Québec are interested in beginning the process as part of a second phase of the project that is being planned for 2015-2016 (Wendake, Mashteuiatsh, Kitigan Zibi, Listuguj, Gesgapegiag, Kanesatake and Winneway).

Culturally-Based, Family-Centered Mental Health Promotion for Aboriginal Youth

With the goal of improving the psychological, social and emotional well-being of First Nations youth, their families and their communities, the FNQLHSSC is coordinating the adaptation and implementation of a program promoting culturally-based and family-focused mental health for Aboriginal youth.

The communities of Gesgapegiag and Mashteuiatsh were selected from amongst the non-conventioned communities in Québec to participate in the first year of the project. The cultural adaptation phase and the implementation of this intervention were carried out between 2011 and 2013.

In 2014, the community of Nutashkuan adapted the intervention materials. Simultaneously, the community of Gesgapegiag expanded its cultural adaptation. The intervention will be offered in these two communities at the beginning of 2015.

It is a nation-wide project coordinated by the Culture and Mental Health Research Unit, Lady Davis Institute, and Jewish General Hospital in partnership with the FNQLHSSC. The project will end in May 2015.

For more information, visit the mental health promotion project website.

Pilot project: Mental wellness mobile team (MWMT)

The result of a collaboration between the FNIHB, the FNQLHSSC and the MSSSQ, this project was funded by the National Anti-Drug Strategy between 2009 and 2013. Two pilot communities were chosen to establish a mental wellness mobile team: Kitcisakik and Lac Simon, in Abitibi-Témiscamingue.

The project was developed and implemented according to the communities' development approach. The MWMT is an interdisciplinary team composed of intervenors with cultural and mental health expertise. The team's mission is to reinforce the wellbeing and autonomy of the pilot communities by establishing culturally-adapted mental health prevention, promotion and intervention services while continuing to support the existing services and programs. 

The core mandates of the MWMT are:

  • Support the local teams
  • Network and liaison with internal and external partners
  • Provide cultural and community services to the population

To find out more about this initiative, consult the document Final Evaluation Report: Mental Wellness Team pilot project.