News and Events
The Daniel Decosta Memorial Baseball Tournament
On July 8, 2017, a charity baseball tournament was held in Queensway Park to bring together friends and family in commemoration of Daniel Dacosta, beloved son, brother, and friend who passed away tragically last year due to suicide. Daniel's family, friends, and his baseball league, the Royal York Baseball League, organized the event to raise awareness of the importance of mental health and raise funds for the Toronto Distress Centre, all while having fun doing what Daniel loved – to play and watch baseball. The Daniel Dacosta Memorial Tournament was meant to bring attention to the pressures youth face in dealing with mental health, but also to provide a special opportunity for people in the community to connect and find the help they need to battle their own issues. The proceeds raised through the tournament were donated to Toronto Distress Centres.
Thank you to Daniel's family & friends for their incredible generosity - Their support will have life-sustaining impact!
Toronto Board of Health Announces 2017 Public Health Champion Award Winners
The Board of Health is proud to present the Public Health Champion Awards to Walter Cavalieri and the Toronto Distress Centre. These awards recognize achievements by individuals and organizations working to improve the health and well-being of Toronto residents.
New Executive Director Announcement
The Board of Directors of the Toronto Distress Centres is very pleased to announce that Ms. Alison Caird will be joining our team on June 5th, 2017 as our new Executive Director.
Alison comes to us from Spectra Helpline – Peel Region, where she has been Executive Director since 2013. While at Spectra Alison’s accomplishments have been numerous. As the ED, Alison took the lead role in the operationalization of the Distress Center Peel and Telecare Brampton merger. She was also the driving force behind the introduction of significant service improvements both through process and technology advances including the ONTX online/text support collaborative, language line specialization and transitioning TeleCheck for Seniors’ into a peer program. Alison was also the Lead for their Marketing, Communications, Media Relations and as the “public face” of Spectra, was actively involved with all stakeholders.
Alison has dedicated her career to the non-profit and public sectors where she began as a literacy coordinator with the North York Public Library and the Children’s Aid Society, and then held progressively senior positions in volunteer management with the Toronto General, Toronto Western, and Toronto Rehab hospitals. In 2009 she became Executive Director of Serve!, a charity that worked with marginalized youth from the priority neighbourhoods of Toronto.
Alison is a lifelong learner with studies in human resources management at Ryerson University, executive leadership at University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management, and fundraising with the Association of Fundraising Professionals. Recently Alison and her colleagues published Measuring the Impact of Volunteers: A Balanced and Strategic Approach, which won the 2016 Terry McAdam Book Award.
The results of Alison’s work have been acknowledged several times with awards and best practice designations in the areas of leadership, strategic planning, standards and service development.
As Chair of the Board of Directors I would like to thank Karen Letofsky for her undying dedication to the Distress Centres for the many years she was with us, and welcome Alison who will lead us into the future. I look forward to this exciting next chapter in the Distress Centres role as we continue to ensure every individual in need receives life-sustaining emotional support.
World Suicide Prevention Day
800,000 people die worldwide by suicide annually, including 3,500-4,000 in Canada. Many more are left behind struggling to make sense of this tragedy.
As a recognized leader in suicide prevention, intervention and postvention, Distress Centres acknowledges and partners with events designed to bring attention to a public health crisis and to the impact on those left behind.
On Sunday, September 10th, Distress Centres is joining with others around the world who are working towards the common goal of preventing suicide. This year’s theme is ‘Take a minute-save a life. Every minute counts.”
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Distress Centres 2015 Annual Report now Available
You can now download our 2015 Annual Report from our website here