Who is CHANNAL?
Consumers’ Health Awareness Network Newfoundland And Labrador (CHANNAL) is the only consumer-led mental health organization in the province. We are a provincial non-profit organization that exists to build and strengthen a self-help network among individuals who live with mental health issues. CHANNAL’s aim is to combat isolation for those living with mental illness, to provide a forum for mental health consumers’ concerns, to educate the public on issues relevant to mental health consumers and to offer advocacy, social and emotional support to mental health consumers.
What are the goals of CHANNAL?
• To build and strengthen a self-help network among individuals living with mental health issues
• To combat isolation for those living with mental issues by offering social and emotional support through self-help
• To increase consumer participation in mental health reform; and to offer a forum for consumer’s concerns; to work towards improving the mental health system
• To educate the public on issues relevant to mental health consumers
• To offer advocacy in order to combat stigma and discrimination towards those living with mental health issues
• To provide opportunities for skill building for consumers
Who does CHANNAL support?
A consumer is any person who has or is experiencing mental health issues/difficulties and has accessed or is accessing mental health services.
When did CHANNAL Start?
In 1989 CHANNAL was Sponsored by CMHA-NL. Moyra Buchan and James Fardy worked to create a safe place where individuals living with mental illness could talk to each other, receive support from one another and learn from one another how to live a full and rewarding life.
In 1994 it was decided at a provincial conference that CHANNAL would work toward independence from CMHA-NL. It took several years before this would happen. Finally in April 26th 2006 CHANNAL became independent from CMHA-NL.