Simcoe Peer Support
Simcoe-Grey MPP Brian Saunderson met with Julian Millman and Dawn Davidson of Simcoe Peer Support, a self help peer support and resource center for people who have or are experiencing mental health and addiction issues, including substance and alcohol abuse.
Simcoe Peer Support is based in Collingwood but is not limited by town boundaries. “We don’t turn people away no matter where they live in Ontario” said Certified Peer Support worker Dawn Davidson. “Most of the people we see are from Simcoe County but we see people who live in Grey-Bruce” Davidson added. Both say their clients benefit from the lived experience they can provide.
Certified Peer Support Worker Julian Millman said there is no barrier to entry to services offered by the organization. There are no fees and no health card is needed. “When someone calls, they won’t have to wait months for assistance. We can see them quickly” Millman said. “We try to be proactive rather than reactive when dealing with things that happen in our lives” he added.
Simcoe Peer Support has about 1,000 active members. Once a person is a member, they remain a member for life. The door is always open for them to visit again. On any given day the organization provides support to about 15 people. They have a closed Facebook group that allows people to support each other online or after hours. Both Millman and Davidson said they are finding many people are still struggling post-COVID. They stress the Collingwood location presents as a safe place.
Simcoe Peer Support is funded through Ontario Health. The Board of Directors is active in community fund raising to help raise additional money to help provide additional services.
For more information, CLICK HERE to visit Simcoe Peer Support’s website.