Occupational Therapist from our H.O.P.E. Early Psychosis Intervention Program
Sharlene’s advice/inspiration for others
What you do every day matters. It’s something that as an Occupational Therapist I’ve heard and said many times in many ways, but it’s the truth. What we do on a daily basis can create habits for health and wellness, connect us to our own values and passions, connect with others, and help us build/contribute to our own community and world. And the fun thing is that each activity can have different meanings and roles in every person’s life.
For National Occupational Therapy Month, I would encourage you to reflect ways to include more activities you find engaging and meaningful in your day-to-day life.
Sharlene’s favourite moment at CMHA
I take great pride and learn a lot when I see our clients find their voice and advocate for themselves. One of my many favourite moments at CMHA was when the Art with Heart group came to a Member’s Meeting to share their interest in continuing this art program. The fondness with which they spoke of Art with Heart stood out to me as an example of how this work matters. It created a community and inspired confidence in each artist. Another fond memory was when this group put on their first art show at the Aurora Public Library-I was so proud to see such great courage and skill of our artists.
Why Sharlene chose to work at CMHA
I chose to work at CMHA as I knew it as an organization that made a great difference in communities across Canada. I especially found the commitment to having client/member engagement in the design of programs very important. On top of this, I choose to stay and enjoy working at CMHA as I find that it is great at drawing out the strengths and passions of each team member and encourages us all to share this with others. There is a great sense of community and support among teammates in the great work we do together.
How the H.O.P.E. Early Psychosis Intervention Program positively impacts our community
My work as an Occupational Therapist within the HOPE Program is about helping youth find and develop a path for themselves after experiencing a first episode of psychosis. Each journey is different and can include working to create a schedule of meaningful daily activities, getting back to school or work, creating connections and a sense of community, and building skills to live well.