Wow! What a year for The Grove Wellington Guelph! Thanks to our many collaborations, we have much to celebrate! 2022 has been a year of many accomplishments in addressing mental wellness in our community. We are a “one-stop-shop” for youth aged 12-26 designed to meet a wide range of needs, including mental health, substance use, primary care, education, employment, training, housing and other community and social services. We offer that safe place of belonging.
The support of our community has had a significant impact on our youth. Because of our generous supporters and community agencies willing to work together, over 22,000 youth visited The Grove Wellington Guelph in 2022. Thanks to the generosity of Linamar, during the month of December, your donations can go twice as far, as Linamar is generously matching donations from our community. You can make your gift by visiting our website.
Looking back on 2022, there is so much to reflect on. The sites have been busy, with youth receiving the support and connections they need. Jessica Martin, The Grove Palmerston Site Lead shared this story of impact:
“Since the beginning of the school year, we’ve had so many youth dropping in here, every day. It’s amazing to see them use the space for a break, to catch up, hang out and just connect. Recently, a youth came in who had moved to the community in Grade 12. That’s a tough transition year and a difficult year to move. She was encouraged to come to The Grove, and after a few visits she started hanging out with another group of youth , the same age, who would play video games. Slowly, she started playing with them and loved it. She said one day, ‘I haven’t been able or interested in playing in two years. It meant so much to have them hand me that controller.’ I saw her personality come out, her comfort in the space. It’s a small thing, but it reminded me of the big impact we have on youth building trust and connection with each other, and with us."
In June 2022, we opened a new site at the University of Guelph. This grand opening marked our fourth site across Wellington County and Guelph. This was a milestone for our area as the community has seen a significant increase in the need for youth mental health support. With the addition of this site, mental health supports have become more accessible to local youth.
In July, we hosted our Ignite Concert to bring awareness of our work to the community. We were so pleased to see many youth and families come to the concert. It was a fun day filled with music, good food, and good company.
In September 2022, along with CMHA Waterloo Wellington and The Children’s Foundation of Guelph and Wellington, we hosted the Youth Mental Health Forum. The goal of the forum was to discuss mental health and wellness in the community, and develop actionable steps to ensure there is awareness of the resources, services and supports available to youth across our region.
We achieved our goal as the Youth Mental
Health Forum had over 300 participants! We heard from youth, mental health experts and government officials on the current state of mental health in our community and what the future of mental health and wellness support could look like in Wellington County and Guelph.
Our work has been instrumental in addressing the mental health and wellness concerns in our community. Of the 46,000 youth between the ages of 12 and 26 living in Wellington County and Guelph, it is estimated that 80 percent are now in need of mental health support. Through our sites across Wellington County and Guelph, we are working to make a meaningful difference in the lives of youth, providing life-saving services.
This year, we introduced the Family Engagement Workshops Series to offer parents and caregivers a way to learn more about the mental health and wellness journey of their youth. We continually host open house tours for parents and caregivers to see where their youth are spending time, the services we offer and how they can get involved,
You can help us kick-start 2023. From now until Dec. 31, 2022, all donations made will be matched by Linamar, a manufacturing company, meaning that your gift will have double the impact this holiday season.
Donations to The Grove Wellington Guelph can be made online at www.thegrovehubs.ca, by mail (The Grove Wellington Guelph, cheques can be made to CMHA WW 900 Tower St. S., Fergus, ON, N1M 3N7) or by phone 833-43-GROVE.
We are grateful to all that supported our youth in 2022. You are having a significant impact and are strengthening our community. We cannot do this work without you! On behalf of the entire team at The Grove Wellington Guelph, we wish you the best that the holiday season offers and look forward to working with you to support our youth in 2023.