May 4th, 2021

// Nearly 2,000 young people in the Quebec City area receive support through the Mental Health Investment Fund

Nearly 2,000 young people in the Quebec City area receive support through the Mental Health Investment Fund

QUEBEC CITY, May 4, 2021 /CNW/ - To mark Mental Health Week, Régis Labeaume, Mayor of Quebec City, and Jacques Goulet, President of Sun Life Canada, are pleased to announce that nearly 2,000 young people in the Quebec City area received outreach, education and support this past year through the work of four organizations supported by the Mental Health Investment Fund.

The $100,000 investment, announced in February 2020 and managed by the Fondation Jeunes en Tête, supports agencies with mental health missions that complement the foundation's activities:

  • Treatment: improving health care access for teens in the provincial capital region; 
  • Raising awareness: delivering mental health awareness programs to junior high school students; 
  • Screening: detecting early warning signs in the region's students.

Growing need
Nearly one in two young people have experienced anxiety or depression since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a January 2021 survey by the Université de Sherbrooke.

"The situation is critical for students right now. We need to focus our efforts on helping young people overcome isolation and support their mental health. This funding plays a vital role by providing youth with direct support and tools to help them cope with the impact of the pandemic," said Mayor Labeaume.

This investment aligns with Sun Life's commitment to build mentally healthy and resilient communities. "Before the pandemic hit, Quebec and Canada were already in the midst of a mental health crisis. The pandemic has only made the crisis worse, especially for our youth. Fortunately, we can rely on the Fondation Jeunes en Tête and its partner agencies who, through their dedication and hard work, are supporting young people with mental health prevention and awareness programs and improving access to mental health care," said Jacques Goulet, President of Sun Life Canada.

Selected agencies and their impact

  • Accès Psy: Promotes access to mental health services for low-income youth to prevent mental health issues from becoming severe or chronic. 
    Impact: Provides twenty free sessions to fifteen at-risk youth struggling with a mental health issue.
  • Boscoville: Develops and promotes prevention and intervention best practices. Its Blues school program focuses on preventing depression in youth aged 12 to 18 and helping those with early signs get treatment. 
    Impact: After having to find new ways to deliver services because of the pandemic, the agency's program will launch in September 2021 in seven high schools in the Quebec City area, reaching 450 students.
  • Fondation Jeunes en Tête: Its mission is to prevent psychological distress in young people aged 11 to 18 in Quebec by giving them strategies to reduce anxiety and depression. 
    Impact: It ran a virtual "Mental Health Basics" workshop free of charge in nine Quebec City high schools, reaching 1,455 students, and will add a tenth school by the end of May.
  • Océan: Supports social and functional independence for people with a mental illness. 
    Impact: Nearly 400 teens from Joseph-François-Perrault high school received support this year through Océan's Prismeprogram, which helps high school students develop social skills, transform their school environment, receive psychological support, and be screened and referred to appropriate resources.

"Through the work of these youth outreach partners, we can support more young people and have an impact where the needs are greatest," said Catherine Burrows, Fondation Jeunes en Tête's Associate Executive Director. "Given the current situation, it's important to join forces and combine our expertise to give adolescents the help and tools they need to build good mental health."

About Fondation Jeunes en Tête
Created from the merger between the Mental Illness Foundation and the Fondation Québec Jeunes, the Fondation Jeunes en Tête's mission is to prevent psychological distress in youth aged 11 to 18 in Quebec. It provides online tools to students, parents and educators and delivers awareness workshops in schools. The Fondation's core activities are raising awareness of mental health issues, destigmatizing mental illness and giving future generations the tools they need to cope with life's challenges. 

In partnership with the Bal du maire de Québec, the Fondation also supports community organizations that provide complementary mental health services. To find out more about the Fondation, visit

Sun Life in the community 
At Sun Life, we are committed to building sustainable, healthier communities for life. Community wellness is an important part of our sustainability commitment, and we believe that by actively supporting the communities in which we live and work, we can help build a positive environment for our Clients, Employees, advisors and shareholders. Our philanthropic support focuses on health, with an emphasis on diabetes awareness, prevention, and care initiatives; and mental health, supporting programs and organizations with a focus on building resilience and coping skills. 

We also partner with sports properties in key markets to further our commitment to healthy and active living. Our employees and advisors take great pride in volunteering close to 12,000 hours each year and contribute to making life brighter for individuals and families across Canada. Learn more about Sun Life in the community.

Mental Health Investment Fund Video
To watch the video created by the Fondation Jeunes en Tête about the Mental Health Investment Fund, visit (in French only)

Sources:Daphné Bédard
Communications Department
City of Quebec
Mylène Bélanger
Sun Life
Isabelle Hudon
Fondation Jeunes en Tête
514-529-1000, ext. 255

SOURCE Sun Life Financial Inc.


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