Project Spotlight: Kids Help Phone

Expanding the Reach and Impact of Kids Help Phone’s Outreach Programs and Gateway Content

Supporting the mental wellness of more young people from equity-seeking and underserved (ESU) communities across Canada including Indigenous, Black, Newcomer, and those in rural and remote regions of the country


Primary Audience:
Young people from ESU communities across Canada:

  • Equity-seeking including Indigenous (First Nations, Metis, and Inuit) people, as well as Black and Newcomer communities.
  • Underserved communities include those in Northern, rural and lower socioeconomic status communities.

Secondary Audience:
Caring adults – educators, family, community leaders, social workers



• Improving mental health literacy
• Building resilience through self-directed tools
• Reducing stigma to stimulate more supportive conversations around mental illness.
• Encouraging help seeking behaviour.
• Increase awareness of Kids’ Help Phone’s supports


1. Expand Evidence-Based Resources and Self-Directed Tools
2. Scale and Adapt Intervention Programs for Equity-Seeking and Underserved (ESU) Communities:

  •  Brighter Days (Skills-based Indigenous Wellness Program)
  • Weaving Threads (Community engagement and capacity building for adults)
  • Counsellor in the Classroom (Teacher-led lesson + Class phone call with counsellor)



  • Online
  • Schools
  • Community

Implementation sites

  • National


    • Kids Help Phone is the only 24/7, national e-mental health service for young people and has the largest community resource database for youth in the country, with more than 25,000 resources and services.
    • During the pandemic, there was an increase in demand for their services by over 137% in 2020 compared to the year prior.
    • In response to this increased demand, Kids Help Phone wants to support the mental wellness of more young people, particularly those from ESU communities across Canada.


In the words of the project team members

“At Kids Help Phone we believe that help shouldn’t be one size fits all. This is why I’m so excited to announce that we’re scaling our content. This means additional resources, additional self-guided tools to help meet youth where they are and address their unique needs in the manner that they need them.”

Key protective factors

  • Mental Health Literacy
  • Access to health and support services
  • Resiliency
  • Help-seeking
  • Supportive relationships in the community

Key approaches

  • Trauma-informed
  • Equity
  • Cultural Safety
  • Engagement



Prerna Sharma
Allison Riva