World-renowned mental health advocate coming to Grand Falls-Windsor

Dr. Michael Unger to talk about resiliency of kids

Published on April 18, 2017

Grand Falls-Windsor Mayor Barry Manuel and President of the Medical Staff Association of the Central Newfoundland Regional Health Centre Dr. Lynette Powell discuss the risks of “bubble wrapping” kids.

©Patrick Murphy/The Advertiser

GRAND FALLS-WINSDOR, NL — For the last several years the Town of Grand Falls-Windsor has focused on building its economy around health care, specifically genomics and research.

This year the focus of the town’s annual conference is to strengthen the community.

Grand Falls-Windsor Mayor Barry Manuel told The Advertiser 

“We are going to bring together local …  guidance councilors, the police, front line medical workers.” 

The focus this year will be youth mental health issues, and will feature a component for residents as well.  

Dr. Micheal Unger is a world-renowned mental health advocate.

He will host an information session on how to build resiliency in kids without “bubble wrapping” them.  

Unger is considered one of the world’s top writers and researchers on the topic of resilience, according to Dr. Lynette Powell, President of the Medical Staff Association of the Central Newfoundland Regional Health Centre (CNRHC).

Powell said the focus of this year’s conference is a little different than for previous conferences. 

“We’ve kind of looked at how to bring people together to deal with the pathology we see, and all the mental illness we’ve seen in youth . . . but this year is . . . saying to everybody, kids are affected by this, so how do we make kids more resilient,” explained Powell.

The session is aimed at parents, and designed to provide coping tools and strategies to allow them to allow their kids to be better at handling problems on their own.  

Unger is also the Canada Research Chair in Child, Family and Community Resilience and Professor of Social Work at Dalhousie University. He practices as a family therapist. He is the author of 14 books that have been translated into five languages, numerous manuals for parents, educators, and employers, as well as more than 135 scientific papers. 

“He is a real expert and he is a world leader in this,” said Powell. “I think it’s a very positive direction to start opening up these conversations.”  

The event is being offered free of charge, however there is limited seating available. Thus far 275 of 300 available tickets have been reserved. The event will take place at the Gordon Pinsent Centre for the Arts April 30.

For more information or to reserve you seat to the event please contact the Gordon Pinsent Centre for the Arts at 709-292-4518.