Supporting your children in their journey through mental health struggles and disabilities
It’s never been easy for people to approach any subject related to mental health issues. This is an even greater challenge when you combine mental health difficulties with a physical or mental disability. In celebration of World Autism Awareness Day on April 2nd, PsyMood decided to address this topic and in partnership with Everyday Heroes, we would like to talk about disability, whether that be in the early stages of life or during adulthood and and how we can better address it, support it and help when needed, to prevent anyone from struggling alone. Everyday Heroes connect parents and caregivers to all accredited pediatric professionals and pediatric organizations in the areas of health, mental health and education with the goal of encouraging earlier intervention for better outcomes.
Below are highlights from the session:
Ross Wilson is a Chaplain and Mental Health consultant that specializes in psychological first aid support. Since arriving in Ottawa, Canada from Vancouver. Ross has been working closely with local community organizations and offering free mental health support during the recent pandemic. As a mental health consultant, Ross Wilson works one on one with companies, community programs and start-ups, to improve employee environments and mental health first-aid. Along with his work, Ross is writing his first book about the “Journey of self” and has a podcast that is based on mental health and the stigma behind it in society.
Pamela Aasen (Everyday Heroes Kids Guest) is the Community Manager for Everyday Heroes Kids. She is a graduate of UNB in Canada with Undergraduate degrees in Early Childhood and Special Education and a Master's degree in Special Education. She brings a wealth of experience professionally and as a parent leader in the disability community. Pam has 25 years experience in special education working with diverse communities in the U.S., Canada and the Dominican Republic. Whilst advocating for her own children she has successfully led parent engagement initiatives and worked with parents in partnership to become advocates for their children in the process of finding appropriate family-centred care and ensuring an appropriate education. She currently lives in New Jersey and is the Project Director and Family Resource Specialist for SPAN's Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Program’s (EHDI) Mentoring and Family Engagement Project.
Joshua Dvorkin (PsyMood Therapist) has a Master of Psychology and is a Registered Psychotherapist under supervised practice. Joshua has certifications in cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioural therapy (DBT), acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), and is currently becoming a certified trauma professional (CCTP & CCTP-II). He has also begun the process of becoming a certified Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) teacher and plans to enroll in a program at Browns University, School of Public Health. Joshua is familiar with treating many types of disorders including anxiety related disorders, depressive disorders, stress related disorders, and more clinical types of disorders such as bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder, psychosis, and others. Joshua also helps those going through difficult life transitions such as LGBTQ2i+, trauma, grief, couples therapy, and divorce.