Province announces $5 million for mental health programs in schools

By Charles Lefebvre - CHAT News
May 8, 2018 - 2:08am

EDMONTON --  The Alberta government has announced a new grant for mental health programs in schools.

The $5-million grant was announced on Monday, and will allow schools to be able to offer mental health resources for students who need them.

“We’ve heard from concerned parents and educators of a growing need for counselling and other mental health programming,” said Health Minister Sarah Hoffman in a statement. "Making sure kids receive these supports is key to setting them up for future success. Our government has made mental health a priority and I’m proud we’re acting on that commitment and making life better for Alberta families.”

The funding will allow new mental health staff to be hired to work with schools to deliver support for children and youth struggling with anxiety, depression, self-esteem and relationships. The staff will also link students to additional resources in the health care system.

The grant, part of the Mental Health Capacity Building in Schools Initiative, currently supports 37 programs across the province, which assists 65,000 students. The new funding will allow for up to 15 new programs to be developed, expanding the reach to 100,000 students.

The application process for schools wishing to develop or expand mental health programming begins this summer.

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