The conversation around mental health has changed in recent years, leading to the general understanding that mental health is just as important as physical health. Although attitudes have improved, health care services – particularly those involved with children’s mental health – have a long way to go to meet the needs of the people they serve. Whether or not you’re familiar with the children’s mental health system, one thing is certain – demand is going up, but those in need are stuck on waitlists or simply lacking the resources to get help. Located in the Toronto Entertainment District, Capitalize for Kids is up for the challenge.
The angle? Improving patient logistics by easing issues faced by health care service providers. This includes patient needs, reducing wait times and creating an overall positive health care experience. We had the opportunity to chat with Capitalize for Kids and find out more about its challenges, successes, events and ways you can get involved!
Help give our readers a better sense of what Capitalize for Kids is.
Capitalize for Kids works directly with management teams of kids’ mental health organizations to build capacity for children’s mental health services so that more kids and their families get the help and support they need. Typically, our work results in reduced waiting times for kids, ensuring families are spending less time looking for help and more time getting it.
What kind of challenges in the mental healthcare system are you working to improve?
One in five children and youth in Ontario will experience some form of mental health problem, and five out of six of these children and youth will not receive the treatment they need. More than ever, kids are reaching out for support. Demand is increasing and mental health service providers are struggling to keep up. Kids and their families are trapped on waitlists, unable to get the help they desperately need. We believe that if we can address the business issues that mental health service providers experience, we can increase the proportion and volume of kids who achieve a positive mental health outcome from treatment. In many instances, we facilitate this activity using data to help better inform the process. Furthermore, we fund the development and implementation of capacity building solutions with our mental health service provider partners. At the completion of a project, we template and share what we learn so that other mental health service providers across Canada can implement similar solutions for themselves.
How does your team measure success?
Each project we work on has various outcomes that inform how we measure success. Outcomes we aim for with our mental health service providers are higher volumes of kids resulting from decreases in wait times, more effective appointments (which will lower the cost per child), and ultimately a higher quality of care.
It sounds like a heavy job. We’re thankful somebody’s doing it! What are some of your team’s favourite spots to de-stress in the Toronto Entertainment District?
- Watching a game at the Rogers Centre or the Scotiabank Arena
- A Friday afternoon summer patio
- Catching a show at the Princess of Wales Theatre or Roy Thomson Hall
- Enjoying one of the many amazing restaurants in the area
How can the Toronto Entertainment District community get involved with Capitalize for Kids? Do you have any upcoming events or initiatives?
We have two main events that provide funding for the work we do with kids’ mental health agencies. We would be delighted to have members of the Toronto Entertainment District community get involved so that we can grow this community of financial support, which will enable us to work with more mental health service providers to become more efficient and effective. Here is a quick overview of our events:
The Bay Street Games: The Second Annual Bay Street Games took place on June 4, 2019. 27 co-ed teams of six represented firms from across Bay Street and beyond in a series of challenging fitness events and raised over $235,000 for kids’ mental health. The design of the event allows for a diverse cross-section of Toronto’s financial sector and other professional services to be represented. If an organization wants to sponsor the event, they should reach out to Diana Bilyk at firstname.lastname@example.org and if they are interested in participating in the 2020 Bay Street Games, they can visit www.capitalizeforkids.org/bsg to sign up for updates.
Best Ideas Investment Conference: On October 23 to 24, 2019, Capitalize for Kids brings together investors from around the world for Canada’s most prominent Best Ideas Investment Conference. Since 2014, the event has raised over $7 million for kids’ mental health. Over 400 senior professionals from prominent family offices, pension plans and asset managers attend. If someone is interested in sponsoring the event, they can contact Rebecca Kirby at email@example.com or they can sign up to attend at www.capitalizeforkids.org/conference.
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