I came to Canada as a refugee. What mental health services can I get?

Many people who claim refugee status in Canada have experienced war, violence, torture or other kinds of trauma. Some people who experience trauma also have:

  • Fear of authority
  • Problems trusting other people
  • Memory loss
  • Depression and anxiety

It may be difficult to establish a new life in Canada. It may be difficult to communicate with government officials or other people. You may find that counselling can help you.

The Canadian Centre for Victims of Torture (CCVT) is a non-profit organization that can help you integrate into Canadian society. CCVT has doctors, lawyers and social workers who provide legal, medical and social services. CCVT also has English-as-a-Second-Language (ESL) classes, music and art therapy and support groups.

IG Vital Health Services also offers psychotherapy services that are performed by registered and licensed psychotherapists and psychologists. Their services may be covered by different insurance providers, government programs, including, the Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP) for those that are eligible. They are based in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).

Resources for Syrian Refugees

Below is a list of resources specific for refugees from Syria.

  • Health Care Coverage for Syrian Refugees - A list of the health care services that are covered for Syrian refugees under the IFH program. From Lifeline Syria.
  • Refugee HealthLine - Call this line (1-866-286-4770), for free, to register for help in being connected with a health service provider who can assist with initial medical assessments and referral to other health services. This is not an emergency or crisis line.
  • Community Resources for Immigrant and Refugee Youth - This is a list of  services for immigrant and refugee youth across Canada. From the Canadian Paediatric Society.
  • Tip Sheets for Caregivers - These tip sheets are for caregivers of Syrian refugee children. They have information about  recognizing culture shock, helping children cope with stress and how to welcome children into daycare settings. From CMAS Canada.

Find more information in Where can I get help with my mental health?

Many settlement agencies can help you find mental health and other services that you need. To find help, go to Services Near Me and search for "community health centres" or "crisis lines" in your area.

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Last updated: November 18, 2020 4001298