W.E. Trans Support to create new program and increase mental health services with $70K boost

A $70,000 boost in funding for W.E. Trans Support will help create a new program to support the mental health of some of the most vulnerable in Windsor-Essex.

“Our model aims to really be inclusive of people that are struggling as well as to support them where they’re at,” said the director of counselling and addictions at W.E. Trans Support Stacey Lock.

Lock regularly speaks with those struggling with addiction one-on-one either over the phone or in a confidential setting.

Thanks to new funding, more of that personal help will be delivered in Windsor.

“This means for the community that we’re able to be referred to, we’re interested in referring out and being a part of that bigger discussion in community of how we can support our most vulnerable people,” Lock said.

The United Way is directing $61,000 in federal funding to the group for a new harm reduction chemical dependency program.

Nearly $11,000 through the Windsor-Essex Community Foundation will help support counselling and mental health programs.

The funding is expected to provide 25 hours of in-person counselling for 36 weeks and 740 service interactions.

That’s the helping hand W.E. Trans Support sees as vital for some of the most vulnerable in the region.

“The transgender community faces disproportionately high rates of addiction compared to the general population and often faces barriers to accessing addiction services that are accessible and affirming of their gender identity,” Lock said.

Lock recognizes the stresses of isolation during the COVID-10 pandemic has created a an even greater need for counselling services and is happy there is new money to back those efforts.                                                                                                            

“It’s really an honour to support people on their journey and for them to be the captain of their own ship and meet them where they’re at. I mean, that’s why we do what we do.”