Mental Health Services

The George Hull Centre for Children and Families is an accredited children’s mental health centre serving children from birth to age 18 and their families. 

Mental health impacts the entire family.  At The George Hull Centre, we provide mental health services that address the needs of the child in the context of their family.  By helping children and strengthening families, we make a difference and improve lives.

Help comes in many different ways. 

Mental Health Services include:

“My worker understands me in a way others do not.  I am able to feel more normal about my mental health. It’s a safe place for me to talk freely.” ~ Youth

 

Meeting the Needs of Children and Families 

Our aim is to deliver programs that are clinically effective, evidence-based and meet the needs of the children and families we serve. We pay close attention to the kinds of problems that children and youth are experiencing when they come to the Centre and adjust our clinical programming to meet these needs. For example, it is well established that anxiety levels are steadily increasing among children and youth in Canada, a trend that we see clearly at The George Hull Centre. Over 50% of the children and youth who present for service at the Community Clinic report anxiety as one of their presenting problems. To address this need, we deliver three evidence-based treatment groups for anxious children and their parents: the Anxiety Group for children ages 9-12, Fun Friends for children ages 5-7, and Hear My Voice, a group for children 4 - 7 (whose anxiety manifests as selective mutism). Children and youth with anxiety are also eligible for individual and family counselling, as well as psychiatric consultation and intervention, should they require additional help.

Similarly, there are concerns that suicide rates among youth are rising and visits to emergency departments have nearly doubled in the last 10 years for urgent mental health concerns related to self harm and suicidal ideation. Indeed, 10% of the youth who present for service at the Community Clinic struggle with suicidal ideation and self harm. In response, we have worked to train a number of our clinicians in Dialectical Behaviour Therapy, an evidence-based treatment program for adolescents who struggle with symptoms such as these. We currently run two levels of DBT skills groups where youth learn to manage and cope with intense feelings in positive ways. We have seen significant improvements in youth functioning as a result of these targeted programs.

These are only two of the areas for which we have developed specialized knowledge and therapeutic interventions. Over the last few years, we have built programs to target trauma and attachment difficulties and family relationships (21% of our children and youth report having experienced emotional abuse, 13% present with attachment difficulties, and 35% report family conflict). We have focused on developing programs for younger aged children and their families as 50% of our families have children under the age of 12. We have developed quick access programs for very young children (0-6) , so they do not have to wait, and brought in developmental specialists so that we can catch serious diagnoses early.

We are constantly developing and redeveloping our programs in the context of the needs of the families we see, the latest clinical science, and rigorous review to ensure the best possible outcomes. We ensure that our staff are expertly trained and that we have the right specialists on the team to provide the most appropriate care.
 

“Programs at The George Hull Centre are designed to address the needs of my child but also takes into account my needs and concerns as a parent. My son has a long way to go and the Centre has definitely contributed to our successes to date.” ~ Parent