To help Ontarians navigating the difficult realities in the wake of COVID-19, the Ontario government has announced an expansion of online and virtual mental health supports, including Canadian Mental Health Association’s BounceBack program.
BounceBack is available now, free of charge, to help people experiencing mild to moderate anxiety, stress and other mental health challenges associated with the pandemic.
Grounded in cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), BounceBack is a guided self-help approach that is a proven, effective way to help people aged 15 and up who may be feeling low, stressed out, worried, depressed, irritable or angry.
BounceBack participants receive telephone coaching, skill-building workbooks and online videos to help them overcome mild-to-moderate symptoms and gain new skills to regain positive mental health.
BounceBack offers different guided self-help workbooks that include titles such as Understanding Worry and Stress, Overcoming Sleep Problems, Changing Extreme and Unhelpful Thinking, Why Do I Feel So Bad? and 10 Things You Can Do to Feel Happier Straight Away.
BounceBack is not a crisis service or counselling program, but a life-skills course that helps participants develop coping techniques so they can overcome challenges now or in the future. BounceBack coaches are extensively trained in the delivery of the program and are overseen by clinical psychologists. The main responsibilities of BounceBack coaches are to foster skill development, provide motivation and monitor progress. BounceBack telephone coaching is available in more than 15 languages.
To receive telephone coaching, clients must either be referred by a health care practitioner (family doctor, nurse practitioner), or they may self-refer as long as they’re connected with a primary care provider. It’s important that primary care providers maintain responsibility for their clients’ overall well-being during their time in the program as BounceBack coaches are not counsellors or therapists.
“We’re living in an unprecedented time amid this COVID-19 pandemic, and we’re thankful that the provincial government recognizes the effect this widespread uncertainty can have on everyone’s mental health,” said CMHA Ottawa Executive Director, Dr. Tim Simboli. “We encourage everyone in our community who may be struggling at home to access BounceBack or any of the other expanded mental health services the government has announced.”
To learn more about BounceBack, visit bouncebackontario.ca or call 1-866-345-0224.