MONCTON (GNB) – A funding partnership will result in $500,000 over three years in support of mental health care for young people in the Moncton area, regardless of their ability to pay.

The funding will help cover the costs of hiring two additional therapists at Atlantic Wellness. As funding continues over the next two years, the organization will be able to serve more than 350 youths per year.

“Young people in New Brunswick deserve the best,” said Health Minister Bruce Fitch. “The provincial government is proud to support Atlantic Wellness as they provide young people in the Moncton area with help when and where they need it.”

The provincial government, through the departments of Health and Social Development is providing $200,000 this year, and the Department of Health will provide the remaining $300,000 over the next two years.

“We are proud to work with partners in the mental health sector, like Atlantic Wellness,” said Social Development Minister Dorothy Shephard. “This grant funding is another example of how much we can achieve when we work together for New Brunswickers.”

Atlantic Wellness offers young people several service options. The same-day mental health clinic is the entrance point to receiving services and allows the organization to see patients who may be experiencing a crisis but are not currently clients. The same-day clinics take place every Monday and Thursday with 60-minute sessions.

Clients have the option of using the clinic exclusively to check in with a counsellor as needed or may prefer to be added to the waitlist for a regular counselling program.

“Over the last ten years, Atlantic Wellness has helped more than 2,200 young people,” said executive director Andrew LeBlanc. “This support from our donors, including the $500,000 from the Government of New Brunswick, will allow us to provide more and more youths the access to resources and support that they need.”

The Atlantic Wellness phone line, 506-501-5504, is open on Mondays from 8:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. to book an appointment in the clinic for later that day or for Thursday. Evening appointments are available. All appointments are first call, first served.

Access to addiction and mental health services is one of five action areas in the government’s health plan, Stabilizing Health Care: An Urgent Call to Action.