Community Partnerships


IMH Speakers Series Luncheon

In the interest of reaching out and being present in the community, the institute hosts regular luncheon meetings to advance its vision. These intimate meetings of approximately a dozen guests allow community members to learn about the cutting-edge research and work of institute-related faculty members and engage guests in dialogue directly with UBC researchers.

Past Speakers have included:
Dr. William Honer– Schizophrenia
Professor and Head Department of

Dr. William MacEwan - Schizophrenia
Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Anthony Bailey - Autism
Professor, Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Jehannine Austin - Genetics
Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry

Dr. William Panenka –Neuropsychiatry
Assistant Professor (Partner), Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Evelyn Stewart - Child
Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry

Coast Capital Savings Fund

To fund research into the causes and treatment of mental illness  in British Columbia.

Coast Capital Golf



In 2014  Coast Capital Savings Charity Golf Tournament raised $204,373, bringing the total contribution of the annual fundraiser to mental health research in B.C. to more than $1.8 million to date.

The tournament, then  in its 13th year, benefits VGH & UBC Hospital Foundation and is part of Coast Capital Savings' community promise to help build healthy minds by combating depression and other forms of mental illness. Interim Coast Capital Savings president and CEO Don Coulter said the credit union's dedication to addressing mental health challenges faced by British Columbians stems from both a moral and business imperative.

"Many of us know someone who has experienced the silent suffering and stigma often associated with mental illness," Coulter said. "Raising funds for research and treatment is a way for us to translate our caring into action. In addition to the personal toll, mental illness carries significant business and economic costs and we hope the funds raised through the Coast Capital Savings Charity Golf Tournament will help advance the important work being done by researchers in this area."

Monies raised through the Coast Capital Savings Charity Golf Tournament over the years have gone to support mental health research at the University of British Columbia. Dr. William Honer, head of psychiatry at UBC and director of the university's Institute of Mental Health, said public funding is helping researchers make strides in mental health intervention and care.

"The outstanding success of the Coast Capital Savings' Golf Tournament supports clinical research at the UBC and VGH Hospital sites," Dr. Honer says. "The goals are the "three i's": to innovate, incubate, and then integrate advances in the care of mental illness to improve the health of our patients, and create value for the health care system. Carrying this out needs the help of tremendous donor groups like Coast Capital."

Wayne Berg, Coast Capital's chief commercial officer and campaign chair for the 2014 tournament, thanked all the individuals and businesses that participated in this year's event held at Surrey's Northview Golf and Country Club. He commended the organizations that partnered with the credit union as sponsors noting that such strong community response reflects a growing awareness of the importance of mental health funding and support.

"Several businesses have made significant contributions to this fundraising effort since Coast Capital Savings launched the tournament more than a decade ago and it's great to see such leadership from the business community," Berg said. "The success of this year's event owes in large part to the valuable support of platinum sponsors: CRI Canada, Desjardins Card Services, IDC Worldsource, Landcor Data Corp and SEI investments.

Barbara Grantham, president and CEO of VGH & UBC Hospital Foundation, recognized Coast Capital's longstanding support for the Foundation. "Coast Capital Savings has demonstrated exceptional leadership in the community by mobilizing awareness about mental health and supporting path-finding research that will continue to have a positive impact on individuals and families affected by mental illness," Barbara Grantham says. "We are grateful for Coast Capital Savings' longstanding commitment to advancing patient care and research through our hospitals."

Coast Capital Savings has been at the forefront of efforts in the business sector to drive awareness and action on mental health issues both in the workplace and community for many years. As part of the credit union's community investments in this area, Coast Capital recently contributed $432,000 towards Fraser Health's Speak Up campaign, an initiative designed to provide teens and young adults with a voice in the mental health discussion.

Coast Capital Savings is Canada's second largest credit union, owned by its 512,000 members. It has 50 branches in the Metro Vancouver, Fraser Valley and Vancouver Island regions of British Columbia and has exciting plans to grow. Product innovations include Canada's first free chequing account from a full-service financial institution. Coast Capital offers one of Canada's 10 Most Admired Corporate Cultures™ and was named one of 2014's BC Top Employers. It is a member of Canada's Best Managed Companies Platinum Club and an Imagine Canada Caring Company. To learn more, visit


For more information, contact:

UBC Institute of Mental Health
Department of Psychiatry,
University of British Columbia

Detwiller Pavillon
2255 Wesbrook Mall
Vancouver, BC V6T 2A1


Tel : 604 822 7310
Fax : 604 822 0399

The Bell Youth Mental Health IMPACT Project

IMH receives $1M from Bell for online youth mental health outreach and research

Today UBC and Bell announced a $1M gift to establish the Bell Youth Mental Health IMPACT project. This initiative will enable researchers from the University of British Columbia to conduct mental health outreach to youth in need.

The gift was announced today by Mary Deacon, Chair of the Bell Let’s Talk mental health initiative, at a ceremony at UBC Robson Square. Ms. Deacon was joined by Bell President and CEO George Cope, UBC Chancellor Sarah Morgan-Silvester, Faculty of Medicine Vice Dean Ross MacGillivray and Psychiatry Professor Michael Krausz.

The Bell Youth Mental Health IMPACT Project will be led by Dr. Krausz, who is also the UBC-Providence Leading Edge Endowment Fund (LEEF) Chair in Addiction Research, at the Institute of Mental Health, part of UBC’s Faculty of Medicine.

As part of the project, researchers will develop a mental health web portal that provides educational and self-assessment tools, automated feedback, a list of treatment options, advice on obtaining services, and coping techniques. Additional features, such as online consultations through e-mail, chat rooms, video-conferencing, instant messaging and social media tools, will be added in the future based on research into the effectiveness of this outreach model.

“Despite the high prevalence of anxiety and depression, especially among those in late adolescence and early adulthood, the proportion of people who actually receive treatment in time is quite low,” said Dr. Krausz, an expert in epidemiology and public health.

“Too often, their first opportunity to access care results from an encounter with police or a trip to the emergency room. Enabling young adults to get help early will reduce the chances that their condition will lead to substance abuse or attempts at suicide,” Dr. Krausz added.

“We are very pleased to be partnering with UBC on this project which will use the latest technology to help young people suffering from mental illness have better access to care,” said Ms. Deacon. “The Bell Youth Mental Health IMPACT Project fits perfectly with the Bell Let’s Talk initiative and is another example of Bell partnering with leading institutions across the country, like UBC, who are looking for innovative ways to broaden the scope of work that they do to address mental health throughout our communities.”

The project will include: research into how B.C.’s young adults are currently using online mental health resources and what is lacking; testing of a web-based psychotherapy program that includes an online self-assessment tool along with self-guided exercises and techniques; creation of a similar online program for anxiety; and testing the effectiveness of various online communication channels, not only between experts and patients but also between experts and primary care providers.

At first, the project will focus on underserved communities and involve partnerships with primary care physicians, school counselors, police and family organizations to facilitate use of the platform by those who need it. Insights from these pilot studies will be used to develop a province-wide mental health web portal.

The project will leverage the UBC Faculty of Medicine’s experience in creating a sophisticated, robust communications network for its distributed medical education program, which encompasses four academic campuses and about 20 clinical sites around the province.

“The Faculty of Medicine, through its distributed medical education network, now has ample experience using technology to address the health care needs of B.C.’s population,” said Dr. Gavin Stuart, dean of the Faculty of Medicine and UBC’s vice provost health. “We are grateful that Bell has given us the opportunity to apply that experience in creating a new model for providing mental health care, one that is particularly suited to the province’s scattered population.”

The Bell Let’s Talk Mental Health Initiative is a $50-million, multi-year charitable program that promotes mental health across Canada based on four key pillars: anti-stigma, care and access, research, and workplace best practices. It’s the largest-ever corporate investment in mental health in Canada. To learn more about the Bell’s initiative, including Bell Let’s Day on February 8, 2012, please visit

The UBC Faculty of Medicine provides innovative programs in the health and life sciences, teaching students at the undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate levels. Its faculty members received $295 million in research funds, 54 percent of UBC’s total research revenues, in 2010-11. For more information, visit

The UBC Institute of Mental Health is home to a community of clinicians and scientists who are fully committed to re-examining the field of mental health and mental illness, and to seeking new insights into the diagnosis and treatment of some of the most challenging issues in modern medicine.

Public Education

A current focus of the Department’s Public Education program is a mental health film series called “Frames of Mind“. Its goal is to promote community education of issues pertaining to mental health and illness. This ongoing series consists of a once-a-month evening screening of a feature length dramatic film or documentary followed by an informal presentation related to the mental health issue depicted in the film. Speakers and panelists range from psychiatrists and other mental health professionals to representatives from mental health community-based and nonprofit organizations, cinema experts and mental health consumers and their family members. A moderated discussion concludes each evening, with full audience participation encouraged.

Other aspects of the series – now in its eighth year – include its rotating co-sponsorship by relevant community advocacy organizations and its ongoing evaluation by those who attend. To date, topics ranging from depression to schizophrenia to autism have now been successfully presented to over 8000 attendees. Please see website

Screenings are held at 7:30pm on the third Wednesday evening of each month at the Pacific Cinematheque Theatre, 1131 Howe Street.

Brain Talks

BrainTalks is a series of talks designed to invite you to consider emerging research about the brain. Researchers studying the brain, from various disciplines including psychiatry, neuroscience, neuroimaging, and neurology, gather to discuss current leading edge topics on the mind. The talks include:

  • dialogue around current topics in the news and popular press
  • up-to-date reviews of current literature in academic press
  • videos and/or film excerpts of relevant discoveries
  • CME credits for select talks

For a list of lecture topics, and detailed descriptions, view the website.

Dalai Lama Centre for Peace and Education

The Institute has an ongoing partnership with the Dalai Lama Centre for Peace and Education aimed at establishing dialogues on topics of mutual interest as they pertain to mental health and the well-being of our society. Following on from the great success of organizing and presenting the September 2006 Dialogue on Happiness and Stress as Determinants of Mental Health, between HH the Dalai Lama and prominent clinical and social scientists, the Institute has co-sponsored two separate events at the Wosk Centre for Dialogue featuring, on one occasion presentations by Professor Richard Davidson University of Wisconsin, and John Helliwell, UBC, and most recently Professor Paul Ekman, UCSF, speaking about his upcoming book “Emotion and Compassion,” derived from nearly 40 hours of conversation with HHDL.