One of Canada’s Oldest Non-Profits
The Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) is one of the oldest national, charitable organizations in Canada and the oldest national mental health charity. CMHA was founded in 1918 by Dr. Clarence M. Hincks, Dr. Charles K. Clarke, and Clifford W. Beers and was originally called the Canadian National Committee for Mental Hygiene. The original goals of the organization centered around war recruits, mental examination of post-war immigrants, prevention, and support for adequate facilities and care for the treatment of mental illness.
Over the 100 years since inception, the Canadian National Committee for Mental Hygiene has gone through a lot of change and expansion. There has been a name change and today there are over 80 CMHA provincial divisions and local branches combined.
CMHA BC Division Forms and Local Branches Follow – Mid Island is the First One
CMHA’s BC Division (CMHA BC) was founded in 1952, and local branches soon followed with CMHA Mid-island being the first. CMHA Mid-island was incorporated in 1986, but judging by old photo albums featuring newspaper articles, the work began in the 50’s.
Today, CMHA Mid-island delivers services to people living in, and between, Ladysmith and Comox Valley. Programs and services include housing, employment programs, a social centre, vocational training, housing supplements, homeless outreach, an overdose prevention site and public education including suicide prevention training (which is delivered throughout Vancouver Island, neighbouring islands and Powell River).