Healthy Minds, Healthy Lives

What is the Healthy Minds, Healthy Lives learning series?

Healthy Minds, Healthy Lives is a free, bilingual, self-study learning series that aims to prepare foster, group, kin, adoptive, and customary care providers to support the mental health needs of children and youth in their care. It was created specifically for care providers to help them understand the types of mental health challenges faced by children and youth in the child welfare system, so that they are better equipped to help them.

For more resources to help you better understand the mental health needs of children and youth in the child welfare system, visit take-5.org.

What topics are covered in Healthy Minds, Healthy Lives?

Some of the topics included in the Healthy Minds, Healthy Lives learning series are signs and symptoms of mental health concerns; trauma, attachment, and mental health; communicating with young people about mental health; systems navigation; supporting youth with risky behaviours; and supporting the mental wellness of Indigenous, Black, and LGBT2SQ+ youth.

There is a particular focus in the series on identities that are overrepresented in the child welfare system and the impacts that racism, oppression, and discrimination against these groups can have on their well-being.

The Healthy Minds, Healthy Lives learning series also includes self-care strategies and practices to encourage care providers to prioritize their own health and emotional well-being.

Who should take the Healthy Minds, Healthy Lives learning series?

Healthy Minds, Healthy Lives was created for foster, group, kin, adoptive, and customary care providers. However, the information in the course will benefit anyone working in the child welfare or private care provider sector.

At this time, the learning series is only available to individuals in these sectors.

How long will it take to do?

Healthy Minds, Healthy Lives is comprised of 8 courses and a total of 15 modules. Each module is between 30-45 minutes for a total of approximately 9 hours of learning.

When will the learning series launch?

The series launched on Monday, June 28, 2021, and new course content is being rolled out every two weeks over the summer. In the fall, participants will have opportunities to connect with other care providers who have participated in the series via facilitated virtual events.

What courses are available for registration?

Courses now available for registration:

Child and Youth Mental Health 101 and the Pandemic’s Impact

This course sets the foundation for the other courses in this series. It includes a welcome from OACAS CEO Nicole Bonnie, and it provides a general overview of child and youth mental health, the impact of the pandemic on their mental health, and how it affects children and youth differently than adults. Participants will learn to recognize the signs of mental health issues in children and youth. Furthermore, participants will learn how a child’s mental health impacts the entire family, some quick tips to start making things better, and how to reach out for support if they are struggling.

Trauma and Attachment

In this course participants will learn about what trauma is, the different types of trauma, and how trauma experienced in childhood derails development. Furthermore, participants will build on their understanding of complex developmental trauma by learning about the threat response system and how it becomes over-sensitized in those with trauma histories. Finally, participants will learn what the Window of Tolerance is, how it is changed by exposure to toxic stress in Complex Developmental Trauma, and how this is expressed through the behaviour of children and youth in care.

 

Courses coming soon:

  • Trauma and Attachment Knowledge in Action: Supporting Children and Youth in Your Care
  • Systems Navigation
  • Wholistic Approaches to Wellness for First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Children, Youth, and Care Providers
  • Supporting Youth with Risky Behaviours
  • Working with Black Communities to Support Mental Wellness
  • Working with LGBTQ2S+ Communities to Support Mental Wellness

How do I register?

For registration details, please email HealthyMinds@oacas.org. You will receive a response within two business days.