In 2014, the Child Development Institute (CDI) and the Integra Foundation amalgamated, bringing together two like-minded children’s mental health agencies in Toronto. As a result, the CDI is now the only accredited children’s mental health agency providing evidence-informed, therapeutic programs and services to children, youth and their families who are dealing with mental health issues complicated by learning disabilities (LDMH).
Programs and Services
The Integra Program provides the following family-centred, evidence-informed, direct clinical services to children and youth ages 8 to 18 years:
- Psychological consultation to understand the child or youth’s learning profile.
- LD informed individual, parenting and family therapy or counselling. The Integra Program tailors evidence-informed therapy practices to accommodate the child, youth or families strengths in learning.
- Triple P Positive Parenting Group Program. Triple P is an evidence-based, group format parenting program developed by the School of Psychology at the University of Queensland in Australia, which is designed to improve parent knowledge, skill and confidence.
- Integra Mindfulness Martial Arts (Integra MMA) (ages 12 to 18 years). Integra MMA is designed to address self-regulation difficulties in youth who have learning disabilities and mental health challenges. The program combines martial arts training with mindfulness meditation, yoga, cognitive behaviour therapy and behavioral principles.
- Integra Young Warriors (Integra YW) (ages 9 to 11 years). Integra YW integrates martial arts (Aikido), mindfulness practice and evidence-informed therapeutic practices (CBT, DBT and drama therapy) within a “dojo” milieu to foster improvements in self-regulation.
- Integra Social ACES (Awareness, Competence, Engagement, Skills) is an evidence-informed activity-based group program for children and youth ages 8 to 16 years. Designed to support the development of social competence, children and youth are carefully matched into groups of 3 to 8 to align work on compatible social competence goals. Programming is developed to meet the client’s need, rather than matching the client to the group programming.
- Towhee Summer Residential Program (ages 10 to 18 years), located in Haliburton, Ontario, supports children and youth with LDs who experience social, emotional and behavioural challenges. The mission of Camp Towhee is to increase social competence and self-esteem, and to assist children and youth in learning new skills in a safe and accepting environment.
Community Workshops and Training
The Integra Program offers interactive workshops and training for parents and caregivers, educators, and other professionals who interact with children and youth with learning disabilities and mental health issues. The Integra Program is committed to the promotion of a community-wide understanding of the mental health needs of children and youth who have LDs. In the workshops, particularly the “Walk a Mile in My Shoes” workshop, experiential activities are used to evoke empathy and emotion to activate learning and increased awareness among participants.
The Integra Program has developed a broad range of workshops pertaining to LDMH, which can be tailored and customized to address the needs of each individual setting, including the home, the school, and the community. Topics include, but are not limited to:
- Walk a Mile in My Shoes
- Emotion Regulation and LDs
- Executive Functioning and LDs / ADHD
- Understanding Memory and LDs
- All About Moods: Anxiety, Depression, and LDs
- Understanding Anxiety and LDs
- The Social Impact of LDs
- Bullying and LDs
- Understanding Psychology Assessments
- Tailoring Therapy for LDMH
Integra has worked in partnership with LD@school to develop a variety of educator resources: