The Provincial Government’s Community Addictions Prevention and Mental Health Promotion Grants are designed to support groups and communities that play an active role in preventing addictions and promoting positive mental health.

This year’s grants will provide about $140,000 to 36 groups, including $45,211 for three schools in Corner Brook that will now implement a curriculum-based program to “teach emotional competencies and reduce aggression in elementary school-aged children.”

Other organizations receiving funding include the Eating Disorder Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador ($10,000),  St. George Status of Women Council ($4000), Planned Parenthood ($3000), and NunatuKavut Community Council Inc. ($5000).

“We believe supporting better outcomes in healthcare can be achieved by empowering communities to take an active and innovative role,” says John Haggie, Minister of Health and Community Services. “This program provides funding to schools, community governments, Indigenous organizations, and others with deep roots in the community as this is where addiction prevention and positive mental health begins.”

Eating Disorder Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador Get Biggest Grant

Eating disorders are among the most prevalent psychiatric disorders in adolescent and young adult females, affecting approximately 10% of young women. That’s 1 in 10 young women. And treatment for an eating disorder can be so expensive that up to half of people with an eating disorder can’t afford it. Therefore, effective prevention has become a major public health priority.

Paul Thomey is the Executive Director of the Eating Disorder Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador, who received the biggest Community Addictions Prevention and Mental Health Promotion Grant this year, at $10,000.

Thomey says Body Project Canada is their first major prevention initiative for eating disorders, and it got off to a great start in 2016. He says the new funding will allow them to expand the program in 2017, “to reach many new trainers and facilitators throughout the province.”

Body Project Canada targets high-school and university-aged students, to promote healthy body image, and combat social pressures to conform to an ideal standard of beauty.

Oxford University Press says “The Body Project is an empirically based eating disorder prevention program that offers young women an opportunity to critically consider the costs of pursuing the ultra-thin ideal promoted in the mass media, which improves body acceptance and reduces risk for developing eating disorders.

“Young women with elevated body dissatisfaction are recruited for group sessions in which they participate in a series of verbal, written, and behavioral exercises in which they consider the negative effects of pursuing the thin-ideal.”