Drop-in services: Meeting the community where they're at

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The Challenge

COVID-19 created limitations to providing in-person client care. These same limitations impacted many of the routines that gave people purpose and meaning in their lives. Personal choices became limited given the pandemic restrictions, creating changes to the structure of people’s days and their connection to friends, family and community.

CMHA Kenora recognized the continuing and expanding need in the community for support with depression and anxiety during the pandemic.

The Solution

  • A “drop-in” model of service with phone or  video options
  • Low barrier – access on own time and “show up” as you are
  • No commitment required
  • Service provided as service needed
  • Work around challenges in access (e.g. If children at home, call when it’s convenient)
  • Harm reduction, health services, and therapy are all offered
  • CBT and DBT Mindfulness group services are also offered
  • Direct internal referrals to more intensive services
  • Service options driven by client needs
  • Focus on meeting people where they are at 

The Process

  • Recognition of need and rethinking the concept of “drop-in”
  • Media and community partner based information sharing on service options
  • Clients can call directly to access service
  • Connected to a clinician that meets their service need
  • If additional services required, same day referrals completed


For more information, contact Regan Dearborn, rdearborn [at] cmhak [dot] on [dot] ca

CMHA Kenora

To share your innovation, email mhanorth [at] hsnsudbury [dot] ca.