Madison Community Services receives $20,000 from the Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund

Madison Community Services receives $20,000 from the Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund

Toronto, ON, December 15, 2016 Madison Community Services is pleased to receive a $20,000 grant from the Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund to expand case management services for its refugee support program, helping newcomers from Syria. The RISE (Recovery during Immigration and Settlement) program provides access to a range of community-based, holistic services to address mental health and settlement challenges for newcomers.

“We are absolutely thrilled to accept this generous grant from the Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund. With this $20,000 grant, Madison Community Services is able to hire an additional Arabic speaking case manager to support a larger number of Syrian refugees,” said Madison’s Executive Director Jean Stevenson. “On behalf of Madison’s Board and our RISE program clients and staff, we wish to thank Bell Let’s Talk for supporting the work we are doing to ensure that refugees with mental health challenges receive the counseling and mental health care that is required for them to make a successful transition to their new country. As was recognized in the recent Senate Committee on Human Rights Report – amongst the numerous difficulties facing refugees, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) further complicates what is already a challenging transition coming to Canada to make a new life.”

The Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund grant supports the increasing numbers of Syrian refugees suffering from PTSD who are being referred to the RISE program. Madison requires additional funds to hire more Arabic speaking case managers to increase its capacity to support Syrian refugees who have serious mental health challenges.

“Bell Let’s Talk is so pleased to support Madison Community Services as it expands the capacity of the RISE program to support the mental health and wellness of Syrian refugee families as they build new lives and settle in Toronto,” said Mary Deacon, Chair of Bell Let’s Talk. “Across the country, the Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund is providing grants to more than 70 groups working to deliver front line mental health services to help people living with a mental illness.”

Madison is a multi-service, community-based Mental Health and Addictions Agency which provides supportive housing and case management services as well as a broad-range of other specialized programs to over 400 clients in Toronto. Madison has an immigration and refugee program – RISE – which supports newcomers from war-torn countries with both their settlement as well as trauma-induced mental health challenges. The RISE program has been operating for 4 years and has been serving clients from countries such as Iran, Iraq, and Afghanistan and, in the last year, from Syria. The RISE program’s primary funder is Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

In addition to federal funding through IRCC, funding for the RISE program from other sources such as Bell Let’s Talk is desperately needed to serve the large numbers of Syrian refugees who need our support.

Madison Community Services promotes the health, recovery and community integration of persons with mental health challenges through advocacy, education and the provision of a broad range of high quality community based support services. To learn more, please visit

The Bell Let’s Talk initiative promotes Canadian mental health with national awareness and anti-stigma campaigns like Bell Let’s Talk Day and significant Bell funding of community care and access, research, and workplace initiatives. To learn more, please visit


For more information, please contact:

Jean Stevenson, Executive Director, Madison Community Services at