Children and Family Development

Healing Spirit House, a 21st-century mental health facility, officially opens

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Children and Family Development

Healing Spirit House, a 21st-century mental health facility, officially opens

Media Contacts
Ministry of Children and Family Development
Communications
250 356-2007
(flickr.com)
Media Contacts
Ministry of Children and Family Development
Communications
250 356-2007

Backgrounders

Facts about Healing Spirit House
  • The former space, which originally opened in 1969, was located in Burnaby on Willingdon Avenue. 
  • The relocation of The Maples programs from Burnaby into həy̓χʷət kʷθə šxʷhəliʔ leləm on the traditional territories of the Kwikwetlem First Nation took place in February and included a canoe carved from a 1,000-year-old cedar and transported from Alert Bay, now permanently installed in the gymnasium.
  • The project began in 2017 and was completed in February 2019.
  • The entire cost of the project was $75 million, which included decommissioning the old Valleyview Pavilion that previously stood at the site.
  • Healing Spirit House was built to LEED gold standards and is awaiting official certification from the Canada Green Building Council. 
  • The building was designed to meet best practices in mental health principles. For example:
    • Natural light, gardens, recreational areas and inviting colours were used throughout to evoke optimism and vitality, along with panelling to compliment the natural surroundings.
    • A list of Indigenous plants provided by the Kwikwetlem First Nation were distilled into a set of colour schemes and graphics for use throughout the space filled with Indigenous art.
Healing Spirit House official opening

Young people who come to Healing Spirit House at The Maples Adolescent Treatment Centre, which is usually referred to as “The Maples”— are referred through the Ministry of Children and Family Development’s Child and Youth Mental Health teams at 100 locations throughout the province.

  • Response, Dala, Bifröst and Crossroads are the four main programs offered to address the needs of youth, aged 12 to 17, who are living with significant emotional, behavioural or mental health challenges that impact their everyday experiences with family, at school and in the community. In addition to mental health programming, Tlatsini, Indigenous programming, is embedded into The Maples’ programs. Tlatsini is a Tlingit word that was gifted to The Maples meaning “The Place We Gather Strength.”

Dala Program
This three-month program provides assessment and intervention for fragile teens with symptoms like depression, anxiety, schizophrenia or other thought disorders. The program has six beds.

Bifröst Program
This program provides a community-based, intensive intervention for teens and their families to support positive family relationships and mental health. The program is three months long and serves eight clients and their families in each cohort.

Response Program
The program designs a care plan for the teen, their family and the community team who supports them. The objective of the plan is to build understanding about the teen’s life and offer strategies for solving problems. This 28-day program has eight beds, in addition to serving youth in the community.

Connect Attachment Programs
In addition to the four programs, the Connect Attachment Program is a 10-week, trauma-informed program designed to support birth, kinship or foster caregivers of youth to create stronger relationships with their pre-teens and teens. The Connect Attachment Program has been offered in more than 40 communities throughout B.C., including urban, rural and remote regions of the province and delivered in small groups by trained facilitators and was originally developed at The Maples.

Crossroads Program
This program serves as a custodial setting for youth found unfit to stand trial or not criminally responsible due to a mental disorder, as well as voluntary clients under the Mental Health Act. These youth typically are suffering from psychiatric and behavioral disorders. The program has eight beds.

Complex Care Unit
The children and youth who are referred to the Complex Care Unit have co-occurring and persistent emotional, mental health, developmental and/or behavioural needs that cause functional impairment in the home, school or community. They require specialized integrated treatment and service plans that are individualized and typically involve multiple services.

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