We are happy to welcome four new members to the CMHA – Wood Buffalo Regional team.
Amanda Holloway, Executive Director
“I am a registered Social Worker, obtaining my BSW from Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador. I have been practicing Social Work since 2007, with the majority of my career being spent in the field of Addictions and Mental Health. I have worked In various fields of work including investigations and case management for Children Services, Forensic Psychiatry serving as a Forensic Social Worker at the Southern Alberta Forensic Psychiatry Centre in Calgary, as well as working within the Mustard Seed in the Calgary area. I have 5 ½ years in Social Profit Executive Leadership servings as the Executive Director of the Centre of Hope here in Fort McMurray. Most recently I worked as a Manager for Addictions and Mental Health within Alberta Health Services; responsible for the Recovery Programs initiated post 2016 wildfire. I have a strong passion for the Social Profit Sector and for advocating for programs and services for individuals living with mental health and addiction issues.
Personally I live with mental illness and I’ve experienced the stigma and misinformation that exist pertaining to individuals living with mental health issues. The promotion, prevention, and treatment of Mental Health and Addictions is something that has always been a passion of mine, and where I have spent much of my life’s work. Considering the psycho-social impacts post wildfire, and the increased knowledge around mental health and addictions in our region, I believe that now, more than ever, we need to unite as a community and continue to advance mental health services in our region.
I am excited to be back in the social profit sector and to work collaboratively in the community to advance the promotion of mental health services in our region. CMHA has experienced incredible growth and advancement in their services over the last few years, and I am personally excited to be a part of such a wonderful organization that is leading such progressive and peer lead services in our community. The team members are truly some of the most inspiring and passionate individuals in the sector, and I am proud to be able to join this group and support them in their incredible efforts. Through my previous roles in this community, I have seen first hand the gaps that exist in our current mental health services delivery model, and I have seen how CMHA programs have advanced the mental health and well-being of our community members who call Fort McMurray home.”
Charles MacDonald – Board President
“I was with the RCMP for 25 years and policed in Alberta, Northwest Territories, Nunavut and Saskatchewan. Mental Health and Addictions played a large roll in my experiences as a police officer, not only with the people I came into contact through my role but also with myself and my family. In my family, mental health and addictions has been something I grew up with and lived and experienced. I believe that was one of the drivers for me to become a police officer as well as being part of CMHA.
I have lived in Fort McMurray for 10 years. This is the community I have lived longer than anywhere else in my life. I find Fort McMurray is one of the most caring communities that I have ever lived in. This caring has driven me to wanting to give back to the place I call home. I first had volunteered with CMHA and then two year ago joined the Board of Directors. CMHA has been instrumental in changing the attitudes and educating people to Mental Health and Addictions. The continued work of CMHA, I believe, is vital to continue to be there for people and the community.”
Jodi Collins, Family Peer Supporter
“I was born and raised in Fort McMurray. I have two children that my husband and I are raising in this amazing community.
I’m extremely thankful and excited to be given the opportunity to work with CMHA as the Family Peer Coordinator, Mental Health is something I feel very passionate about. I look forward to being able to use my lived experience to help those families and caregivers who are struggling and make some positive connections in the community. I strongly believe we have a great opportunity within CMHA to change the face of Mental Health and most importantly give people hope.”
Penny Berry, Consumer Advocate
“I was born in England, moved to Ontario in 1983, and moved to Fort McMurray in 2003. I have been married since 2006 and I have a puppy and 2 kitties. I have loved being a part of CMHA and the Recovery College and I have learned in the past year that my trauma has a purpose. I have finally found that purpose in this new position and am looking forward to meeting all of the wonderful people who will cross my path.”