Mental Wellness Centre (South Okanagan Similkameen Mental Wellness Society)
Our Impact Why We Exist
Provide education and caring support for families affected by mental illness in the South Okanagan (Summerland-Princeton – Osoyoos). The family unit is our first responsibility and primary focus. The person with the illness is always included in the definition of family.
We are dedicated to supporting each other, educating the public, raising funds for research and advocating for better services for people with schizophrenia and other serious and persistent mental illnesses. This includes individual and group support for family members of all ages and peer support for persons in recovery. Mental illness affects the person and their circle of support. Everyone needs care and learning
Our Story What We Do
In the early 1990’s, when one of her children was diagnosed with a mental illness, Rita Lucier placed a small newspaper ad inviting other families to come together to support each other. As an incorporated Branch of the BC Schizophrenia Society (1997), we are part of the Schizophrenia Society of Canada federation.
We are dedicated to supporting each other, educating the public, raising funds for research and advocating for better services for people with schizophrenia and other serious and persistent mental illnesses.
In response to the needs of the communities of the South Okanagan Similkameen, the Branch provides support and education related to any mental illness. Mental illness affects the person and their circle of support. Everyone needs care and learning.
Our Programs How We Do It
As the Mental Wellness Centre, we are inclusive of all mental illnesses and provide information and support for individuals and groups.
One in 5 Canadians will have a mental health concern in their lifetime. This is 16.800 people in the South Okanagan Similkameen. (34% of Penticton residents report suffering from depression & anxiety vs. 31% in Summerland, 26% in Keremeos and 24% for all of BC. South Okanagan Similkameen Vital Signs Report 2013 p. 6. )
1. For the family system of a person having any mental illness:
• Individual or family group support • Support Groups • Education for all ages • A shared voice for better services
2. For the person through Peer Support or Martin House for Young Adults to develop a personal plan for coping with the impact of mental illness • Individual Goals • Self-care education, life skills development • Social connections
3. For the community • Collaboration with other agencies • Education to combat discrimination
Programs are rooted in best practices and the belief that peer support is essential for the family system to cope with the effects of mental illness.
What You Can Do
Join your voice with ours for better mental health services by becoming a lifetime Branch member.
Volunteer for events, education programs for all ages to defeat stigma, help with resource development.