RC Burlington Lakeshore Invites You to Come Understand the Issue and Help Build a Solution.

Being involved in Rotary naturally provides each of us as members with many opportunities to hear about and start to understand the needs within our community. Often our speakers at our meetings are representing community service organizations sharing their stories, successes, and challenges. And often these stories have an all too familiar and in common theme, that being mental health.
Before the pandemic we heard about and supported many partners, all of them expressing mental health awareness concerns and unmet challenges for their clients. Throughout the pandemic we couldn’t help but hear about the increasing cry for help for dealing with mental health related needs and more and more agencies are, by necessity, getting involved with working towards a solution including Halton Police Services Special Units, and the Boards of Education.
In our volunteer activities and during our meetings, not only did we experience mental health challenges within our own membership, but we also learned about the lack of funds and capacity and the long waiting lists to assist individuals in mental health crisis and the lack of awareness to these barriers. Advocates for improvement, such as John Reynolds of Equilibrium Burlington and Chair, Joseph Brant Hospital – Consumer Advisory Committee – Mental Health, have almost brought us to tears with their periodic updates to our Club. Some of our members joined John and Equilibrium this Fall in their” Walk to the Lighthouse” in support of Joseph Brant Hospital Mental Health and Addiction Services helping them to raise over $19,000 for Joseph Brant Hospital Mental Health programming.
That alone wasn’t enough for us at Rotary Burlington Lakeshore. Thus, we will host a panel discussion at our Tuesday, January 10th Club meeting at the Art Gallery of Burlington at 12:00 noon. We will have a prominent speaker from JBH Mental Health Services Program and Community Advocates for accessing Mental Health and Addiction Services in Burlington as panelists.  Click here to join via Zoom. 
In addition, we decided to bring back our “Wine for Friends” to be held at the Art Gallery of Burlington on Wednesday, February 8th during the dark days of winter in support of Joseph Brant Hospital Foundation Mental Health and Addiction Services Redevelopment and Expansion Project. The intent of this fellowship event is to bring awareness to and raise funds for the Mental Health needs in our Community. This evening will feature a keynote speaker from Joseph Brant Hospital. Further, we have made a pledge to and are reconnecting with all
our community partners to help them in addressing mental health issues as best we are able for the overall benefit of our community.  
All are welcome to join us in bringing awareness to the need to better mental health and addiction services within our communities. Please join us at our January 10th Club meeting or at our “Wine for Friends” fellowship event on February 8th. Click here for information and tickets. 
Community Partners include: Nelson Youth Centre, Shifra Homes Inc., Reach Out Centre for Kids (ROCK), Our Community Cares, Liberty for Youth, Halton Learning Foundation, Salvation Army Lighthouse Shelter, Wesley Urban Ministries, Gore Park Community Outreach, Men’s Street Ministry, Wellington Square Meal Program, etc.