How Do I contact Early Childhood Mental Health?
Program Hours: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday. Closed on all Statutory Holiday.
Contact: Kristen Hilmoe, M.Ed, RPT, RCC, Registered Play Therapist, Registered Clinical Counselor
Address: Kiwanis Hilton Children's Centre, 4325 Neill Street, Port Alberni BC, V9Y 1E5
What is Early Childhood Mental Health (ECMH)?
- Early Childhood Mental Health is a confidential, child and family centred program.
- It is one of the programs provided by the Port Alberni Association for Children with Developmental Disabilities (Outreach Therapy)
- It is free, voluntary and confidential. It is funded by Child and Youth Mental Health, Ministry of Children and Family Development
- It is for children 0 to 6 who have emotional, behavioral or psychological concerns, and their families
- Typical reasons for referral include attachment issues, disruptive behaviors, anxiety, trauma, grief and loss.
What Services does ECMH Provide?
- Individual child and/or family therapy. Therapies include Play Therapy, Parent and Child Theraplay, Filial Therapy, and Family Therapy.
- Parenting consultation on children's developmental, emotional, psychological needs, parenting strategies, family dynamics and specific parenting needs.
- Information handouts on selected topics and recommended reading lists for parents.
- Intervention is based o the children and family's individual needs. The treatment plan is developed with the parent/guardians.
- Where appropriate, and with permission from the parent/guardian, ECMH works with other service providers such as preschools, schools, community agencies and professionals.
How Are Referrals Made?
- With parent or guardian consent, anyone can refer a child to ECMH
- Referrals can be made in writing, by telephone or by stopping by the office at Kiwanis Hilton Children's Centre
- If you are referring your own child: The Child and Family Therapist will gather information from you and determine if ECMH is the appropriate service. If it is not, they will discuss what other options are available to you.
- If you are a service provider: The therapist will gather information about your reasons for referral and then, if the referral is appropriate, contact the family. You will need to have permission from the parent/guardian in order to refer.
- Referrals may either be seen by the ECMH therapist or the Early Childhood Therapist at Child and Youth Mental Health. After the referral has been accepted, one of these therapists will contact the family. Once admitted to the program, appointments are usually once a week.
ECMH on the Internet:
- Information and resources about CYMH in the Province of British Columbia with many useful links.
- Web-based knowledge tools containing information on depression, anxiety and psychosis in children and youth. Contains print, video, and web-based resources.
- Association for Play Therapy
- The Theraplay Institute