PEPP Parent Support Group Update

In late December of 1997, a handful of parents whose children used the services of the Prevention and Early Intervention Program for Psychoses (PEPP) at London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) were alerted to the possibility that vital components of the program were in jeopardy due to problems with allocation of funding. The parents responded without hesitation; they mobilized forces and actively petitioned LHSC to ensure adequate resources were allocated as mandated. Their cries were acknowledged and the mandated provincial funding was quickly put into place.

Buoyed by their successful efforts, the PEPP parents continued to meet frequently to discuss the issues and concerns that so often face caregivers. All agreed that it was a great relief to be able to talk openly with others who were facing similar challenges. It seemed logical to then ask: If the monthly meetings are indeed so therapeutic, then why not share the positive experience with other PEPP parents? And so the seeds for the PEPP Parent Support Group were planted.

The group continues to grow and evolve as more and more parents reach out to one another for encouragement and support. The group's aim, first and foremost, is to provide peer support to parents as they embark upon a new journey in their lives. However, several PEPP parents have also enthusiastically welcomed the opportunity to assume a more proactive role and, as such, continue to work tirelessly to spread the word about the need for early intervention and early detection in psychosis.

Parents and caregivers of PEPP clients are cordially invited to attend the monthly support group meetings held at:

London CMHA 648 Huron Street @ Adelaide 7 pm

Each meeting offers a "Care & Share" hour followed by an "Action Hour" (guest speakers, films, discussions, advocacy, etc.).

Note: We meet the 3rd Wednesday of each month except in December due to the PEPP Client & Family Christmas Party.

Now in our 7th year and in keeping with our PEPP Parent Support Group (PPSG) mantra "Do what you can, when you can", look at how we continue to grow and support PEPP:

publish and distribute our PPSG's monthly newsletter to members

promote and distribute issues of Family to Family, a national newsletter for first episode psychosis families

promote "One Day at a Time", a video in which several members of our PPSG describe their experiences as parents of young people
with psychosis (available for purchase by contacting Canadian Mental Health Association - National Office, www.cmha.ca)

participate in community, hospital and medical school information sessions/presentations

promote and participate in SSO's annual Walk of Hope

attend and participate in local, provincial and national conferences

attend regular meetings of the Mental Health Advisory Committee for LHSC (one parent representative)

attend regular meetings of the local Mental Health Promotions Committee (one parent representative)

participate in the National First Episode Psychosis Family Network (two parent representatives)

attend regular meetings of the Ontario Working Group in Early Intervention in Psychosis (one parent representative)

welcome the opportunity to connect with first episode psychosis families across Canada and around the world ("Connecting the Dots" initiative)

promote membership in the International Early Psychosis Association (www.iepa.org.au)

support PEPP's School and Community Education Program

partner with PEPP to promote and stage PEPP's annual "The Big Night - London", PEPP's annual fundraising initiative and
celebration of hope and recovery

conduct Bake & Craft Sales at the hospital (minimum 4 times per year)....proceeds to support PEPP Patient Programs

support PEPP's Client and Family Library (i.e. purchase of combination TV/VCR and stand)

provide on-going support for out-patient programs (purchase art, cooking and recreation supplies, yearly passes to the YMCA for use by PEPP clients, supplies for hygiene classes, etc.)

provide on-going support for in-patient program (donate comfort items, toiletries, magazines, paperback novels, puzzles, games, art supplies, VHS movies, snacks, etc.)

promote and sell our eye-catching "Putting the Pieces Together" PEPP T-shirts

produced video "One Day at a Time" to describe experiences as parents of young people with psychosis

promote and sell our popular "PEPP Up Your Kitchen!" cookbooks


THE BIG NIGHT

PEPP's annual fundraising initiative and celebration of recovery and hope for the future.

Since 1999, PEPP Parents have generously volunteered their time and talents to promote and stage this hugely successful dinner, dance, and silent auction gala.

 

The PEPP Parent Support Group welcomes the opportunity to connect with families from across the country and around the world. For more information about our group contact:

Sue McLeish
PEPP Parent Support Group
c/o PEPP
Prevention and Early Intervention Program for Psychoses
London Health Sciences Centre
392 South Street
London, Ontario, Canada N6A 4G5

or email info@pepp.ca