MDAO Forum

Support for People with Mood Disorders => General Discussion => Topic started by: Daniel F on May 28, 2015, 12:21:05 pm

Title: Surviving to Advising project looking for new recruits
Post by: Daniel F on May 28, 2015, 12:21:05 pm
Hey Everyone,

The Surviving to Advising project, which is a CAMH program that pairs peers/mental health consumers/survivors to be advisors to psychiatric residents, is currently looking for new recruits for their next round, which starts in July. The purpose of the program is to make peer support and peer perspectives a part of psychiatric education, and in essence to “build better psychiatrists.” This is a project that I’ve been a part of as an advisor for the past year and a half, but regrettably won’t be able to continue on due to scheduling conflicts for the coming year.  If you are interested or know of any peers who may be interested in participating, please check out this link: ( where you can find out more.

From the application tab on the website:

“We are always interested in hearing from people who might like to participate as advisors.  Minimum qualifications include at least 5 years of experience using mental health and addiction services and experience working as a peer or system advocate.  A deep and broad understanding of recovery and the ability to engage learners in constructive dialogue and critical reflection are key skills. 
If you are interested in applying, please email sacha.agrawal[at]”

Please help spread the word to anyone who may be interested.

Title: Re: Surviving to Advising project looking for new recruits
Post by: paulm on June 01, 2015, 10:34:42 pm
Hello Everybody. This looks like a good project and anyone who resides in T.O. who is along the way to recovery (and I use the word "recovery "loosely LOL).

 I'm added parts that Dan didn't put in.(thx Dan for posting this, it's great information)

 "This project aims to pair senior psychiatry residents with ‘experts by experience’ -- service users in advanced stages of recovery -- to promote mutual growth and understanding.

The goal of the project is to give residents an opportunity to learn about the lived experience of people with significant mental health and addiction issues in a context that is free from the constraints imposed by the doctor-patient relationship.  It is also hoped that the experience of being advised by service users who are in advanced stages of recovery will assist residents in developing a better sense of the possibilities for recovery."

 Some of the topics that you will be asked about are

"What does recovery mean?  How does it happen?  What are the critical ingredients?
Where and how are prejudice and discrimination experienced?
What is it like accessing and navigating the mental health and addiction systems?
What is it like talking to a (new) psychiatrist?
Why do people sometimes choose not to take medications or use psychiatric services?
What is it like experiencing involuntary treatment or confinement?
In what ways do mental health and addiction services support recovery?  In what ways can they be improved?"

  So this is your chance to tell wanna be doctors what they really should be doing, before they become stubborn and all knowing LOL.

 I find it great that they are finally asking people like us, what works. This is only the second project that I have heard of in Canada. Crest BD has a much larger project going on that I have been part of and it's been great having input into what treatments may be like in the future.  Take Care. paulm
Title: Re: Surviving to Advising project looking for new recruits
Post by: Soozan on June 03, 2015, 04:32:50 pm
It would be nice just to "get a psychiatrist!!!" I went to a CAMH appointment only to find out that it was a "1 of" appointment to review my medications and that is it .... no help whatsoever to get me linked to a psychiatrist ... it just feels like there are so many psychiatrists at camh "studying psychiatry" when they could be practicing it .. it may not be true ... I am just very frustrated ... I want a psychiatrist downtown but it seems to get any kind of psychiatrist is hard.... I have to settle for anyone who is looking for patients and risk them being an idiot like I had before ... I guess I have a bad attitude ... but its frustrating .. very frustrating... to say the least

There is my rant for the day! :)

- Soozan
Title: Re: Surviving to Advising project looking for new recruits
Post by: paulm on June 04, 2015, 12:04:53 am
Hello Soozan. Sorry you are having trouble getting a psychiatrist. I know how frustrating that can be. I've ranted about the same thing a few times myself, well perhaps more than a few times LOL. Take Care. Paul M

  Hello everyone. What follows won't help Soozan's frustration and believe me her frustration is justified. I've been dumped by shrinks because I was too well. Still ill enough to be on disability , but too well to need a shrink. It would seem to be a conflict of terms. Trying to be get a new shrink is really tough too. 

 However in case anyone reading this doesn't know the following, CAMH does have a lot of trainee psychiatrist because that is one of it's primary duties. Hopefully that will be a good thing as it should mean in the future, we will have a few more shrinks around and possibly even a few that know why we do the things we do.  You will notice I said hopefully, because the reason why there is a shortage of doctors in general and specialists in specific, is because many yrs ago the Province managed to screw up the system and cut the numbers of people allowed into Medical school and also the number of internships etc available at the same time that the population of Ontario was increasing, a totally dumb thing to do.   We know have something like 20% fewer doctors and 20% more population than when that decision was made.

 The number of entrants allowed into medical school is still severely restricted and it has nothing to do with getting only the best and smartest as a 95% average still may not get you in. The province has opened up a few more spots in recent yrs, but still not nearly enough. If you are every talking to your local MPP, ask them why the province still restricts entry when most medical schools would gladly take more students. And that's my rant. Take Care. paul m
Title: Re: Surviving to Advising project looking for new recruits
Post by: Soozan on June 06, 2015, 09:04:32 am
Thanks Paul! It's good to know that there is something that one can do!

- Soozan
Title: Re: Surviving to Advising project looking for new recruits
Post by: rollingl on June 13, 2015, 10:41:55 pm
Does this program accept people who were once in the psychiatric system in another city and have since recovered? I have not been involved with CAMH, but I have been involved with Kingston and St. Thomas.
Title: Re: Surviving to Advising project looking for new recruits
Post by: Daniel F on June 17, 2015, 11:39:43 am
rollingl, I don't think it matters where your experience comes from geographically - you don't need to have been involved with CAMH in the past.
Title: Re: Surviving to Advising project looking for new recruits
Post by: videosilva on June 20, 2015, 03:58:33 am

 Canada is a corrupt country and that is why there is not help. The government REGULATES how many people are ALLOWED to become physc. and then it is like winning the lottery to get the education and degree. You HAVE to know someone or you will NOT be allowed to study.

 My daughter went through this last year. So, much money, time hard work only to be told that a hand full of people are allowed to study yearly.