Hub Update: December 2021 edition 
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The Joy of Anticipation 
At this time of the year, it is quite natural to look ahead, anticipating things to come. We may anticipate a break from our usual routines over the Holidays, upcoming time with family and friends, bringing closure to the current year and welcoming a new one. Here at the Hub, we are looking ahead to the 2022 Annual Symposium; a main chance for us to help mental health promotion flourish in Canada. While we may not be counting the number of sleeps just yet, we feel a growing excitement for supporting connections, conversations, learning, and all the magic that happens when people with shared passions come together. We hope you choose to join us. 
From the Hub
Recent highlights

Hub November webinar: Project sharing on youth engagement   
Many of the Mental Health Promotion Innovation Fund (MHP-IF) projects have knowledge and experience engaging youth. Changing conditions since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic have led to new ways of engaging youth and other project participants through virtual, in-person and hybrid options. This webinar featured roundtable discussions led by six of the MHP-IF projects. Thank you to those who facilitated the discussions and to all participants for their willingness to share and learn from one another. The Event Brief provides highlights from across roundtables and main points of discussion for each of the roundtables. 
New resource category: Youth engagement 
The Hub is committed to avoiding duplication and promoting existing expertise. One way we do this is through curating resources on topics of shared interest. As described in a recent blog, youth engagement is one such topic. Following the project-to-project sharing at the November webinar, the resource section of the Hub website now includes annotated resources on youth engagement. This new category includes resources that offer practical guidance for engaging youth through a variety of means and for purposes that include programming, research, and civic engagement. 
Find resources relevant to mental health promotion on our Annotated Resources page.
Extending MHP-IF project stories 
Over the past month, the Hub had conversations with each of the 20 MHP-IF project teams. These conversations use story-telling methods and extend the stories project teams shared one year ago. They are a promising source of practice-based, experiential evidence that is helping us build new knowledge about how to do mental health promotion with a wide variety of participants and in equally variable places. The Hub anticipates sharing insights from project stories at the 2022 Annual Symposium and beyond. 
Co-designing the Annual Symposium
While the event will last only for a few days, planning for the 2022 Annual Symposium happens over an extended period and involves the insights, hopes and ideas of many. Applying our commitment to participatory approaches, the Hub is engaging the MHP-IF projects, Hub Resource Collaborative, Public Health Agency’s MHP-IF team and a Reference Group. The latter includes members from each of the previously named groups, others from the mental health promotion community, and a multi-media artist. Recent co-design sessions have helped to shape, focus and refine our plans. Thank you to contributors and for reinforcing what we know well – we are better together! 

Looking ahead

2022 Annual Symposium REGISTRATION NOW OPEN!  
Share in the anticipation and join us February 16-18, 2022 for a free virtual event! Not sure if it might be for you? It may be if:  

  • You are curious about mental health promotion – what it is and how your work might be contributing to it even if your primary focus is something else 

  • You are a participant, partner or curious about one or more of the projects funded by the Mental Health Promotion Innovation Fund 

  • Your work involves addressing one or more determinants of mental health: individual level determinants, such as the ability to build social and emotional skills, cope with stressful circumstances, develop healthy behaviours; community or relational level determinants, such as a sense of belonging, social support, positive relations with people and environments (e.g., natural, built, cultural, spiritual); systems or structural level determinants, such as quality housing, education, employment, positive cultural identity, freedom from violence and discrimination

  • You want to make some connections that can support your work 

  • You are seeking to interact, discuss, debate, and otherwise engage with others who share your interests 

Still considering if the event is for you? The spotlight section below provides the Program-at-a-glance. Access more details on the Hub’s Annual Symposium website page.  

Hub December webinar: Using the Indigenous Inclusion Lens 
The Hub’s Indigenous Inclusion Lens was developed in collaboration with lead author, Dr. Kathy Absolon, professor in Indigenous wholistic knowledge at Wilfrid Laurier University. The lens seeks to foster conversations, planning and actions toward inclusion of Indigenous voices and knowledge in ways that are respectful and culturally appropriate. In this webinar, Dr. Absolon will lead a workshop on use of the lens for the MHP-IF community and invited guests.  
Dr. Kathy Absolon will lead a workshop on using the Hub's Indigenous Inclusion Lens at the December 10, 2021 webinar.
From the field

On the theme of promoting existing expertise, below are a few resources and events from the field of child and youth mental health promotion that recently caught our attention.  

  • The connection between exercise, screen use, and mental health and wellbeing are the focus of these recent studies: Pascoe et al.Khan et al.Brown et al.

  • paper looking at how Indigenous youth conceptualize mental health, the intersection of spirituality, and challenges and barriers to supporting youth mental health. 

  • A new initiative from the National Collaborating Centre for Healthy Public Policy (NCCHPP) is mapping public health systems across Canada. The first profile, for Ontario, has been published with others to follow.  

  • From the Institute of Human Development, Child and Youth Health’s youth advisory council, this interview touches on the importance of upstream determinants related to youth experiencing homelessness. 

  • An infographic from Harvard’s Center on the Developing Child depicts how racism can affect child development.  

  • Hosted by the University of British Columbia’s Human Early Learning Partnerships, the Early Years Conference 2022 will take place virtually on March 1 and 2, 2022. Registration is now open.  

  • video recording and handout from a recent webinar presented by Dr. Tracy Vaillancourt about the Impact of COVID-19 on Youth Mental Health.  

Let us know if there are new resources, events or research you would like us to share. We love to hear from you:

Spotlight: 2022 Annual Symposium
As the Hub moves toward a full Program for the 2022 Annual Symposium, we thought an early ‘teaser’ might help inform decisions to register. It might also help build the joy of anticipation for more than those directly involved in event planning. The Program includes a set of linked, daily themes – all aligned with the Hub’s mandate and with the overall theme of growing mental health promotion in Canada. It also includes online sessions that are suitable for all time zones across the country. With a little more than a day’s worth of content spread over three days, the Program provides a ‘retreat-type’ experience; a time for participants to pause and reflect on their assumptions and approaches, and to readily engage with others who have shared and complementary interests. All with a variety of personal wellness opportunities and without on-screen or information overload.  
The Knowledge Development and Exchange Hub is dedicated to advancing child and youth mental health promotion in Canada. Our niche is supporting projects funded through the Mental Health Promotion Innovation Fund and others with shared interests. Learn more at
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