The goal of the Krasman Centre is to serve as a physical hub and resource for the community of Psychiatric Survivors and their Families and Friends serving York Region (Richmond Hill main location) and South Simcoe (Alliston satellite location) of the Central Local Health Integration Network. We offer and operate all of our programs through two drop-in centres, with a variety of peer support, mental health recovery* and social services programs serving people who experience mental health extremes or labels as well as people who experience homelessness. We operate both sites with various and non-traditional service hours. We also operate a telephone support line called The Warm Line 365 days per year from six pm until midnight. This Warm Line is special in that it is open for anyone in the Central LHIN communities to call, whether or not they experience mental health or homelessness concerns, as York Region’s only non-crisis telephone support line. We also offer recovery-based* education and support programs for family members and friends.
The Krasman Centre is a Consumer/Survivor Initiative funded primarily by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care but also receives funding through various grants and foundations. A Consumer/Survivor initiative is an type of organization that is governed, led and staffed by consumer/survivors and family members (when appropriate). These kinds of organizations may be independent, or may receive organizational support from a mainstream organization. We are proud to note that the Krasman Centre is a totally independent organization governed by a volunteer Board of Directors composed of consumer/survivors and family members. For more information on consumer/survivor initiatives or to find one near you, please visit opdi.org.
What do we do?
We offer a variety of hassle-free recovery-oriented* programs and services based on the philosophy of intentional peer support through two drop-in locations (main location in Richmond Hill, satellite in Alliston). We offer a variety of services and programs including:
- Peer-based programming by staff and community volunteers, e.g. spirituality groups, food and income security workshops, art classes, holiday and event celebrations, events and activities that involve social justice issues
- Wellness and recovery support for consumer/survivors
- Support to families and friends of those struggling with mental health issues through the Family Recovery Education and Support Program
- Art-based therapeutic programs and arts-informed community-based research opportunities
- The Self-Help Network of York Region
- Mental Health Recovery training and resources (www.cultureofrecovery.org)
- Volunteer Opportunities with ongoing training
- The Warm Line (1-888-777-0979 6pm-midnight, 365 days per year and York Region’s only non-crisis telephone support line)
- A monthly Bulletin outlining the monthly programs and activities
- Use of the facilities (computers, meeting room, laundry and shower facilities and for those who are homeless; phone/fax/photocopier use)
- Central Local Health Integration Consumer/Survivor Network
- Access to emergency basic needs support for people experiencing homelessness
- Certified Wellness Recovery Action Planning groups and facilitators (WRAP is a self-help recovery group) and Pathways to Recovery training
- ExtraOrdinary People, an anti-discrimination documentary based on the lives and recovery of people with mental health issues (based in York Region, North/Simcoe Muskoka and Toronto)
*Recovery-based services or programs means that the foundation is on mental health recovery as a paradigm, much different than the more dominant and mainstream services models based on the bio-medical (“medical model”), psychosocial or rehabilitation models of mental health services and thinking about mental health challenges. We believe that people will and do recover from mental health extremes, and can lead fully self-determining and actualized lives with or despite mental health labels. We also recognize that what is difficult to overcome is the poverty, food and housing insecurity, racism, homophobia, and myriad oppressions that many people face who also live with mental health extremes.
What we think recovery-based services…
- Respect self-determination and autonomy without conditions
- Do not involve coercion or coercive service delivery paradigms
- Expect recovery and wellness, and do not believe inherently on lifelong disability or illness
- De-pathologize mental health struggles and struggles as a result of poverty and oppression
- Recognize the social determinants of physical and mental health
- Provide for the affirmation of our social identities and opportunities to develop learning for the provider as a learning relationship
- Facilitate connection and relationship with the broader community
- Recognize the civil rights movement behind the consumer/survivor movement, and work to develop leadership, peer support opportunities and service-user empowerment