Government of Canada announces $450K to Table Éducation Outaouais to support youth mental health

Press Release

From: Health Canada

May 13, 2024

By making strategic investments to help address the specific challenges faced by youth, particularly those who face disproportionate barriers because of systemic racism, discrimination, socio economic status or social exclusion, the Government of Canada will ensure that all people in Canada get the mental health and substance use supports they need, when and where they need them.

Today, Minister Steven MacKinnon on behalf of the Honourable Ya’ara Saks, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health, announced $450,000 in funding for Table Éducation Outaouais to support the mental health of elementary school students in Québec’s Outaouais region.

With this funding, the Simply me/Simplement Moi project aims to promote positive body image, build self-esteem and reduce bullying among students ages 10 to 12 who attend elementary schools in the Outaouais region. It also includes activities aimed at reducing internalization of harmful media messages, reducing unhealthy weight control methods and improving self-efficacy.

This announcement is part of a $100 million investment provided in Budget 2021 to support projects that promote mental health and prevent mental illness in populations disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, including youth.


“As students transition to secondary school, they navigate a landscape where societal pressures and media influences can profoundly shape their self-image and mental well-being. Recognizing the challenges they may face, the Simply me/Simplement Moi project is dedicated to supporting youth mental health during this transitional time. The project aims to nurture healthy attitudes towards body image, elevate self-esteem, and address the issue of bullying.”

The Honourable Ya’ara Saks
Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, and Associate Minister of Health
“Our youth encounter many pressures that can harm their self-esteem and mental health. That’s why initiatives like Simply Me/Simplement Moi are so valuable; they equip students with tools to build self-esteem, embrace a positive body image, and combat bullying. I look forward to seeing the positive ripple effect in our communities.”

The Honourable Steven Mackinnon
Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Member of Parliament for Gatineau, Quebec

“It’s important our youth feel supported as they transition to secondary school. The Simply Me/Simplement Moi project plays a crucial role in this journey, offering resources and guidance to foster healthy attitudes towards self-esteem and body image. By promoting tools to improve mental health, we can help our youth address bullying and build the resilience needed to thrive in today’s digital world.”

Sophie Chatel
Member of Parliament for Pontiac, Quebec

“By empowering our youth to cultivate a positive self-image and stand up against bullying through school-based initiatives like Simply Me/Simplement Moi, we are investing in a brighter future for our communities.”

Stéphane Lauzon
Member of Parliament for Argenteuil—La Petite-Nation, Quebec

“A project that places mental health and self-esteem at the heart of its actions promises a future of success and well-being for the students at the end of their elementary school cycle who benefit from this Simplement Moi/Simply me pilot project. With this initiative, the Table Éducation Outaouais hopes to rise above the challenges of body image and self-acceptance, so that every child can look in the mirror and see the reflection of a unique being capable of great things.”

Steve Brabant
President, Table Éducation Outaouais

“Knowing that appearance-related bullying is frequently observed in elementary schools, and that school and teaching staff play a key role in helping young people become more tolerant of body diversity, it seemed essential to have a program that addressed both body image and appearance-related bullying. This program had to be adapted to the reality of schools, and be easy to implement and adopt. That’s what the Simplement Moi/Simply Me program developed with Table Éducation Outaouais is all about!”

Annie Aimé, Professor at the Department of Psychoeducation and Psychology,
Université du Québec en Outaouais and co-author of the Simply Me project

Quick facts

  • Mental health promotion and mental illness prevention are critical components for well-being and can help reduce demands on the health care system. Community-based projects focussed on mental health promotion have the potential to improve health outcomes over the life course.
  • Kids Help Phone is available 24/7 with e-mental health service offering free, confidential support to young people in English and French.
  • The Hope for Wellness Help Line offers immediate help to all Indigenous Peoples across Canada 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call the toll-free Help Line at 1-855-242-3310 or connect to the online chat.
  • 9-8-8, Canada’s three-digit suicide crisis helpline, is available to call or text, in English and French, 24 hours a day and seven days a week, across Canada.

Associated links


Yuval Daniel
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Ya’ara Saks
Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health

Media Relations
Health Canada

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