Home on the Hill Supportive Housing is a Charitable Organization founded by the families of people with serious mental illness. It was incorporated in 2011 and received charitable registration in 2012.
Home on the Hill serves clients from the 2.5 percent of individuals who have serious mental illness. These individuals often do not access service from mainstream mental health agencies. Many have the symptom of anosognosia and lack insight that they have an illness, so believe that they do not need service.
Home on the Hill supports their families, too, who are still not considered part of the “circle of care”. The 2013 Guidelines from the Mental Health Commission of Canada, which would pave the way for the family voice to be incorporated into the formal mental health system remain largely unimplemented to this day.
Home on the Hill proudly supports the Guidelines of the Mental Health Commission of Canada and incorporates the recommendations into our model of care. Accordingly, our programs are developed by families together with clients. Our programming supports both the family and their loved ones with serious mental illness.
What We Are Doing:
- Home on the Hill conducts a very successful Public Education Series called the Robert Veltheer Lecture Series named for our late founder. In this series, psychiatrists and other well regarded mental health professionals give lectures on mental illness. Subjects which have been covered are diet and exercise, anxiety and depression, schizophrenia, psychotic illness, bi-polar disorder, the relationship between marijuana use and psychosis, and lived experience. Recent attendance has been averaging 100 people. Home on the Hill is very grateful for these wonderful speakers who have given freely of their time and expertise!
- Home on the Hill conducts a bi weekly family support group for the families of those with serious mental illness. We also have social events for families which are very much appreciated.
- Home on the Hill offers individualized respite services to families and family members with serious mental illness. For example, we have sent a yoga instructor into the home when the client refused to leave the home; we have a therapy dog from St. John’s Ambulance that goes to the house of someone with serious mental illness.
- Home on the Hill acquired its first housing unit at the Community Hub at 10415 Yonge Street in Richmond Hill on November 1, 2016. A tenant was selected for this unit and is currently receiving support services from Home on the Hill.
- Home on the Hill has been granted space by York Region at the Community Hub to run a weekly cooking program. We have recently moved this program to St. Mary’s Anglican Church where our program participants, with the guidance of our Life Coach, make nutritious lunches for members of the Dementia Church and their caregivers, other seniors, homeless people and other members of our community.
Who Funds Us:
- Home on the Hill is a volunteer driven organization whose volunteers contributed an average of 4,000 hours per year. On October 28th of 2017, we had our first gala fundraiser which was very successful. We were very honored that this event was attended by both our federal and provincial representatives and two local councilors. We are also the proud recipients of funding from the Mayor’s Golf Tournament, Councillor Karen Cilevitz’s Skating Party, the Town of Richmond Hill, St. Mathews United Church, Richmond Hill Presbyterian Church, St. Mary’s Anglican Church and Private Donations. Please see the Donor Recognition page for more information.
Art Therapy: We provide our clients with a weekly experience with our Psychologist Anahita during this session. Encouraging free self expression through painting is a great therapeutic technique. This is meant to improve a person’s mental and emotional well-being through providing a meaningful outlet.
Music Jamming: Music session helps clients improve their health in several domains, such as cognitive functioning, motor skills, emotional development, social skills, and quality of life by expressing their creativity through music.
Cook Group (Soups On!): This program believes in a “healthy mind, healthy body” approach. It focuses on communication, cooperation, mindfulness, creativity and appreciation. Working together in the kitchen provides clients with a sense of initiative and belonging.
Yoga Class: In this class, clients will participate in a one hour yoga session that focuses on enhancing your mood, relieving stress and improving memory, all while boosting overall fitness. Limited space is available. Case managers welcome. Please contact Maggie@rveltheer.com.
Support Group: During this two hour duration, caregivers have the opportunity to express and discuss their feelings in a safe and confidential space. They leave with a sense of relief and knowing that they are continuously supported by others with similar experiences.