Outreach is the first step in developing relationships with the most disenfranchised people in Canada. It links people experiencing homelessness to resources and services they want and need. The goal of outreach is to provide the spark for the journey back to a vital and dignified life as part of the community. Core outreach services include engagement, information and referral and direct services. But even the best outreach efforts cannot be successful without following through and offering proper programs and services.
Research raises concerns about the lack of access to necessary programs and services, long waiting times and the lack of specialized care for a variety of different conditions and target groups. People are often strong supporters of the programs they do access but express concerns abort how difficult it is to access care when it is needed, particularly in rural areas. Canadians express a need for better transitions and coordination across the range of services they require as well as better planning when discharged from formal facilities.
There is always a need for better access to and a larger number of healthcare services for people experiencing mental illness. People experiencing mental illness need more services in hospitals, more beds in acute care hospitals and provincial facilities, more community based programs and services, more supports for people to be independent and employed in their communities, more outreach, outpatient and rehabilitation programs, more awareness programs, more housing with supports for people with mental illness, more coordination of services, more support for families, more crisis intervention and more mental healthcare providers.