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Mental Health Promotion Project for Senior Francophones in Southern Ontario 

From: Best practice guidelines for mental health promotion programs: Older adults 55+ (© 2010, 2011 CAMH)

Goals and objectives

  • to inform older adults about the stress-related factors that influence physical and mental health and to help them develop strategies to address these factors
  • to give recent francophone retirees the opportunity to share knowledge and expertise with their older counterparts in the community
  • to develop partnerships with francophone service providers


This project offered a mental health promotion program to older francophones (Guideline 1), taking into account the lack of culturally specific services available to this population (Guideline 8)—especially services that address aging-related stress. The project trained non-professional volunteers to work with people in need (Guideline 4) and held workshops where these older adults could gain information and share personal experiences (Guideline 5). By providing these resources, the project hoped to promote mental health among older francophones while also decreasing the stigma attached to mental health problems. The project aimed to connect new retirees and older retirees with more community services, thereby easing their adjustment into retirement (Guideline 6). The project was completed successfully in 2006 and has been evaluated. There is hope for the project to continue as a result of the positive feedback from the community (Guideline 11).

Additional information

Start date  2001–2002 
Guideline 1: Audience, specific populations 
  • francophones
  • rural residents 
Guideline 2: Protective and risk factors, and determinants of health 

Protective factors

  • access to support services
  • healthy lifestyle
  • resilience

Risk factors

  • anxiety
  • depression
  • isolation
  • issues with self-esteem
  • limited or no social support
  • suicidal ideation or history of suicide attempts

Determinants of health

  • social supports
  • ethnocultural backgrounds 
Guideline 3: Multiple settings 
  • community health care centres
  • social service offices 
Guideline 7: Multiple strategies providing volunteer training 
  • providing workshops for older people to gain information and share experiences
  • connecting older people with community services 
Guideline 9: Multiple stakeholders 
  • Community Care Access Centres
  • Hamilton/Niagara Region 
Guideline 11: Evaluation  yes 
Learn more

Contact Christine Lebert, CAMH (tel. (705) 675-1181 or e-mail


In Best practice guidelines for mental health promotion programs: Older Adults 55+

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