Les Avocats

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Mission Statement
We work collaboratively with consumer/survivors and families to improve lives through information, networking, self-help, mutual support, and partnership. All programs and services, including volunteer-delivered programs, are delivered by people who identify as having direct personal experience of mental health extremes and/or homelessness and/or people who identify as psychiatric consumer/survivors as part of our peer support philosophy.

“Peer Support is a system of giving and receiving help founded on the key principles of respect, shared responsibility, and mutual agreement of what is helpful. Peer Support is not based on psychiatric models and diagnostic criteria. It is about understanding another’s situation empathically through shared emotional experiences.” (Sherry Mead-2003)

Peer support refers to services provided by and for people who have had similar life experiences. It is rapidly becoming one of the most valued, accepted and effective approaches to assist people who experience mental health and addiction issues. Peer support is unique because it fosters values including self-determination and equality, mutuality and empathy, recovery and hope. This approach can take many forms: peer support groups, one to one mentoring, crisis services such as residential and warm lines, support in employment and creative activities. Its potential is limitless. “It’s not so much what peers provide that makes the difference, but who provides it and how. “The use of positive self-disclosure and role modelling are key in peer support work because it fosters the development of trust, empathy and hope.

Studies have shown that people who use peer support have similar or better outcomes to people who use traditional services only. The evidence for peer support in mental health/addictions has developed rapidly over the past decade. People who use many different kinds of peer support report high levels of satisfaction and positive changes in their lives. These include:

  • Reduced substance use.
  • Reduced experiences of psychosis and depression.
  • Reduced use of health services, including hospitals.
  • Increased social support, networks and functioning.
  • Increased ability to cope with distress.
  • Increased quality of life.
  • Increased ability to communicate with health professionals

(Source: Making the Case for Peer Support: O’Hagen, Cyr, McKee and Priest, Mental Health Commission of Canada, September, 2010).

Peer Support in the Drop-in:

The Krasman Centre operates two mental health drop-in centres one in Alliston and the other in Richmond Hill. The drop-in is a safe and supportive place that emphasizes helping individuals feel autonomous. The centre helps people help themselves, and one another. It is a place where there are no demands and no pathologizing-where one can just relax, enjoy and experience what the peer recovery movement has to offer.

The Warm Line:

The Warm Line is a telephone peer support line for anyone in York Region, South Simcoe and the Central LHIN (Local Health Integration Network) living with mental health issues or in need of emotional support. The Warm Line is available 24 hours; 7 days a week. The Warm Line’s toll free number is:


Peer Support Education Groups:

Pathways to Recovery
Pathways to Recovery is a tool to help people move forward in mental health recovery. It is an extensive self-help workbook. The workbook orients people to recovery, helps them to identify their personal strengths and dreams, and refocus on reclaiming positive sources of identity and a life beyond being a person with a psychiatric disability or a full-time consumer of mental health services. It helps people think about and plan how to live a full life.

(Wellness Recovery Action Plan)
WRAP stands for Wellness Recovery Action Plan. It’s a program that was developed in Vermont, USA, in 1997 by Mary Ellen Copeland and a group of friends who had all experienced the mental health system. The WRAP program involves an educational and planning process that is grounded in mental health recovery concepts such as hope, education, empowerment, self-advocacy, and interpersonal support and connection. Within a group setting, individuals explore self-help tools (eg. peer counseling, focusing exercises, relaxation & stress reduction techniques) and resources for keeping themselves well and for helping themselves feel better in difficult times.

PeerZone is a series of three hour peer led workshops in mental health and addiction where people explore recovery and whole of life wellbeing.

The workshops fall within five themes:

  • Understanding ourselves
  • Empowering ourselves
  • Working on our wellbeing
  • Connecting to the world
  • Exploring our unique identities

PeerZone works on three levels for  participants:

  • It invites them to rebuild a more positive story of their lives.
  • It offers tools for whole of life wellbeing.
  • It creates a community of mutual support.

Click this link to view our peer support flyer Peer Support Pamphlet


The Krasman Centre is generously funded by:

Funded in part through The Regional Municipality of York

Important Announcements

The Krasman Centre in partnership with LOFT Crosslinks is please to announce the opening of a new Peer Support Drop in Centre in Newmarket, ON. The Drop in space will be open Tuesday's from 11am to 5pm starting October 20th. Please feel free to drop in and meet our peer support staff and share ideas about what you would like to see at the Drop in.


The Holidays are quickly approaching, and the Krasman Centre's annual tradition, with much support from the community, is to provide holiday gift packages to individuals living in poverty.

Any donations of NEW toiletries, personal hygiene items, socks, hand towels, hats, mitts, scarves etc. Would be greatly appreciated.

Donations can be dropped off before December 9th at:
10121 Yonge St. Richmond Hill
17 Paris St. Alliston

Krasman Centre Warm Line

The Warm Line is now 24 hours per day, 7 days per week Call 1-888-777-0979

Contact Information

Main Office (Richmond Hill)

10121 Yonge Street
Richmond Hill, ON
L4C 1T7
tel: 905-780-0491
fax: 905-780-1960

Satellite Office (Alliston)

17 Paris Street
Alliston, ON
L9R 1J3
tel: 705-435-0054
fax: 705-435-6340

Toll Free: 1-888-780-0724

Hours of Operation

Richmond Hill

Regular Hours

Mon, Tue, Fri: 10:30am-5pm
Wed: 12pm-5pm
Thurs: 2pm-9pm
Saturday & Holidays: 11am-4pm
Sundays: closed


Regular Hours

Mon, Tue, Thur, Fri: 11am-4pm
Wed: 1pm-4pm
Closed Statutory Holidays
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