A new tool for navigating mental health resources is on its way to the Border City. The Mental Health Navigation Tool is coming as a resource booklet and website cataloguing all the community’s mental health resources for those in need.

According to the social needs assessment done nearly two years ago, eight out of 10 residents reported being affected by mental health concerns or a substance use problem. The goal of the tool is to respond to those needs by addressing social isolation, building resilience and helping people better connect with supports. Lorelee Marin, chair of YLLMyHome and animator for Project Sunrise promotion group, says it’s often hard for people to find out where they can go for help.

“We recognize also that it was really difficult sometimes for people to navigate services. The mental health navigation tool will be that resource that we have created that will help people navigate services better and become more aware of what’s available in our community,” says Marin.

The book will list all the resources in the community with descriptions on why you would access them, what costs are associated with them, how to get referrals or if you can self-refer. The website will share tools and practices for people to enhance their own mental well-being, what mental health looks like and tools for self-managing anxiety and depression.

Marin is happy to say that the tool has been developed, and is under review to ensure nothing has been missed and that it’s user-friendly. Feedback will be examined by the end of August ready for its launch on September 10.

The date marks World Suicide Prevention Day, and Marin says a number of activities are planned for the community on the launch date, including the participation of local businesses and schools identifying what positive mental health looks like. A ceremony with a candle lighting will also be held. Marin says a number of activities are in store to help celebrate and raise awareness on mental health.

“Stay tuned for lots of great activities that will be happening across the community,” says Marin.