City puts out call for ideas to help people with mental health and addiction issues
Calgary earmarks $1M for proposals to build road map for those who need care
The city is asking for people to pitch their ideas for ways to help Calgarians who are struggling with mental health and addiction issues to better access existing systems of support.
Mayor Naheed Nenshi says a $1-million fund has been set aside to test new ideas to help prevent those in need from falling through the cracks.
"We have incredible systems of support and care available in our city," he said in a release.
"What we need is to test new ideas that will make sure that those who need our help don't feel like they're navigating a maze in order to access it.
Proposals should be concrete plans that could be tried out starting in May so staff can report back on results in mid-September, the city says.
Those ideas and suggestions are being collected online at the city's website until Feb. 16.
The funding is available for those ideas that can demonstrate results within 120 days.
Karen Gosbee, co-chair of a group of community leaders supporting Community Action on Mental Health and Addiction, lost her husband, entrepreneur George Gosbee, to suicide in late 2017.
"I felt completely hopeless," said Gosbee.
"Our family was exhausted from dealing with the situation at home and I felt like we couldn't navigate the system. I didn't know what resources there were out there. We need better ways for people to access and navigate the help that's out there."