St. John’s, NL –A Dollar A Day Foundation, founded by businessman Brendan Paddick, entertainer Alan Doyle, and doctor Andrew Furey, marked its official start at The Rooms in downtown St. John’s, NL today. The organization hopes to unite members of the public across Canada to Share the Change for Mental Health and Addictions by giving a dollar a day to help make change happen on the front lines of mental health.
“Mental illness is the leading cause of disability in Canada. We all know someone who has been impacted by mental health and addictions. That person could be a friend, a family member, a neighbour or a colleague,” says Brendan Paddick, founding member of A Dollar A Day, “We wanted to do something to help create real change for people facing the challenges of mental illness and addictions. There are so many great organizations doing effective work, but they just don’t have the financial resources they need to help more people, and waitlists can be long. We wanted to do something about those issues.”
A Dollar A Day Foundation exists to raise funds to close the gap between the availability of mental health and addictions programs and the growing need. While statistics give a sense of just how great the overall need is, the principles of A Dollar A Day Foundation are focused on the recognition that behind every mental health data point is a real, suffering human being, and the idea that every time there is an interaction there is a possibility for positive change in a real person’s life.
“We are committed to keeping it simple; we want everyone who donates to know that their gift is just as important as the next persons’, so we are asking everybody for a dollar a day – nothing more, nothing less” says Alan Doyle, “We can all be a part of the solution for better mental health and addictions services. If we all give a little, together we can share the change. We all have to be in this together, so A Dollar A Day creates opportunity for everyone to support mental health care.”
A Dollar A Day will fund proven programs that are addressing the challenges that people are facing today. The Foundation looks for innovation, measurable results and the ability to replicate success in other areas of the country, with a goal to fund programs in every region of Canada. Today they announced the first chosen charities; Thrive Community Youth Network in St. John's, NL; The Canadian Mental Health Association's Living Life to The Full program in Ontario; The Salvation Army’s Harbour Light program in Vancouver, BC; and the Mental Health Commission of Canada's HEADSTRONG program in Calgary, AB.
"We are very proud to have chosen these programs for our initial support. They represent a broad range of front line mental health programs and are leading the way in innovation and effective mental health services," says Dr. Andrew Furey, "If a program is effective in St. John's, NL, hopefully the concepts and best practices can be replicated in other areas to help many more people. These programs are paving the way for better mental health and addictions services, and we know that by supporting them, we are creating opportunity for change right across Canada."
A Dollar A Day Foundation is looking for supporters from coast to coast to coast in their campaign to improve access to mental health and addictions care in Canada. To join the movement, you can visit www.adollaraday.ca where you can give monthly, quarterly or an annual gift, all in support of mental health and addictions services in Canada.
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Background: A Dollar A Day Foundation was established to raise funds to close the gap between the availability of mental health and addictions programs and the growing need for them. Founded by Brendan Paddick, Alan Doyle, and Dr. Andrew Furey, A Dollar A Day Foundation is a simple, affordable and empowering way to support frontline mental health and addictions programs. Everyone gives a little--A Dollar A Day. We put our small change to work for big change. And as we do, we'll create a social movement and build a stronger voice to make mental health a priority.
For more information about A Dollar A Day Foundation, please visit www.adollaraday.ca or follow us on Twitter and Facebook @adollaradayfdn