The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) recognizes that genuinely engaging and collaborating with youth is essential for improving our mental health care system. The MHCC has been engaging young Canadians through our Youth Council since 2008, asking members to provide input on the MHCC’s Mental Health Strategy for Canada, HEADSTRONG initiative, emerging adults portfolio, anti-stigma research initiative, and its homelessness and mental health project, among many others.
The MHCC is currently seeking applications for eight (8) new Youth Council members as we enter our renewed 10-year mandate (2017-2027). Three of the vacant seven seats are designated for Indigenous representatives to be filled by one First Nations, one Inuit, and one Métis youth.
The MHCC’s Youth Council is an inclusive, safe space that values diverse perspectives and backgrounds. We are looking for youth who have lived experience with mental illness, or who have experienced the mental health system through a family member or friend.
New members of the Youth Council must commit to a 36-month term and will be at least 18 years old, but no older than 25, at the start of their term.
Members will be asked to participate in various MHCC projects in order to provide youth representation and perspectives. The Youth Council, for example, recently developed a youth-focused version of the Mental Health Strategy for Canada. Entitled The Mental Health Strategy for Canada: A Youth Perspective, this project helps to advance system change recommendations as viewed by young people across Canada.
Participation on the Youth Council involves travelling to two national, face-to-face meetings per year and corresponding via email or teleconference with other members and MHCC staff. An honorarium will be provided to Youth Council members. All expenses related to participation in the Youth Council, including travel and accommodations to attend meetings, are paid for by the MHCC.
This year, we are looking for youth representation from across Canada and from diverse backgrounds, including:
- Family caregivers
- New Canadians
- Youth with diverse ethnic backgrounds
- First Nations/Inuit/Métis
- Residents of northern Canada
- LGBTQ2S youth
- Youth with diverse educational and linguistic backgrounds
- Youth in care
To apply, please submit your application here.
Complementary to the online section of the application, you may send by mail a creative representation of yourself, such as a video (approx. 5 minutes), photo-essay, poem, short story, drawing, or painting.
This call for members is open until 5pm (MST) on Friday January 13, 2017. Short-listed candidates will be contacted for an interview by phone or over Skype. The first meeting of the new Youth Council will take place in the spring of 2017.
Visit our webpage to learn more about the Youth Council and for more information on current members: http://www.mentalhealthcommission.ca/English/mhcc-youth-council
If you have questions regarding the application or process, please contact:
Mental Health Commission of Canada
350 Albert St., Suite 1210