Ontario health minister opens new youth wellness hub in Haliburton

The new Haliburton Youth Wellness Hub officially opened on Thursday. Christine Elliott/Twitter

A new youth wellness hub in Haliburton, Ont., aims to provide additional mental health and addictions services for youth and young adults.

On Thursday, Christine Elliott, deputy premier and Minister of Health, was in the village 100 kilometres north of Peterborough for the grand opening of the Haliburton Youth Wellness Hub, located on 12 Dysart Ave. (the Gospel Lighthouse Church building).

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Designed for people ages 12 to 25, the hub will offer walk-in services such as mental health, addictions, crisis support, counselling, primary care and social supports for employment, housing and income.

Elliott says the Haliburton hub is one of 10 youth wellness hubs now established across the province.

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“For the past year, we’ve been travelling the province to hear about the changes Ontarians expect to see in our province’s mental health and addictions system,” stated Elliott.

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“Investing in innovative solutions like the Haliburton Youth Wellness Hub, which fills an urgent gap in care, is another example of how our government is listening and delivering more accessible, coordinated mental health and addictions services for our youth and young adults. Our government is building a system that ensures every person in Ontario is supported throughout their journey towards mental wellness.”

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Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock MPP Laurie Scott notes the hub will provide “one-stop-shop” support for more than 750 youth and young adults in the Haliburton area, improving accesses to addictions support and social services and providing early identification and prevention and “seamless access” to more specialized care, if required.

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“The Haliburton Youth Wellness Hub will give area youth and young adults a safe and reliable place to get the mental health, addictions and social supports they need, and more importantly, a place to belong and call their own,” said Scott.

Marg Cox, executive director at Point in Time, one of 29 partner organizations, says youth played a key role the entire development of the hub.

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“Youth have been involved in writing the proposal, governance, choosing the space, the wall colours, outreaching to the community and their peers, and co-designing service pathways and programming options to ensure that this is truly a place that they have ownership of; that is relevant, welcoming and meeting their needs,” she said. “Fostering a sense of belonging and community is especially important in a region as rural as ours.

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The hub will run Mondays from 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., and Tuesdays to Thursdays from 1 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

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