Our history with CASA House

In January 2013, we struggled with ongoing mental health crises with Emily.  The community mental health services were offering no real help and Emily's behaviour and choices were spiralling down.  We insisted that her psychiatrist refer her to CASA House, knowing that the potential wait for admittance could be up to a year.  After a session with her therapist, Emily was assessed at being high risk for a suicide attempt and upon contacting the Director of CASA House, she was admitted the following Monday.  We found out shortly after Emily's admittance that funding restrictions resulted in the stay of 16 weeks for adolescents.  In 2009 and prior, the adolescents remained in CASA House for as long as they needed and until they completed the treatment program.  Emily stayed for 21 weeks due to the severity of her illness but her behaviours resulted in her continued stay being counterproductive.  She saw other kids who arrived after her, leaving before her.  On 21 July 2013, after making progress with her therapist Greg, Emily was discharged back to our rural community.

While Emily was in CASA House, we were so happy knowing she was getting the help that she needed.  She was safe, supported and improving.  We know in our hearts, that if Emily had been able to stay in the CASA program, without the funding restraints in place, she would still be with us today.  The very ill children cannot have their treatment dictated by funding...they need their treatment to be based on their individual need.  Our ongoing advocacy is to continue to fight for more mental health funding from the government to treat our at-risk adolescents.

     About CASA House

CASA House is a specialized in-patient program. This residential setting supports teens with significant mental health and/or addiction challenges who have not benefitted as expected from previous clinical interventions. CASA House uses a family-centred, evidence- based treatment approach to support both therapeutic and educational goals. The program involves parents and caregivers as active participants in their youth’s treatment. Individual, group, and family therapy are incorporated into the youth’s individualized treatment plan.

Adolescents are referred by their therapist or psychiatrist. 

If you want to know more about CASA House program, please click here!