To lead change that will revolutionize the addiction and mental health care experience for people in Ontario.
The best addiction and mental health system, anywhere.
Who We Are
Addictions and Mental Health Ontario (AMHO) represents 200 addiction and mental health organizations in Ontario. Our members provide services and supports that help Ontarians across the province with their recovery, including community-based counselling and case management, peer support and consumer run businesses, residential treatment, withdrawal management, supportive housing and hospital based programs.
What we do
As the collective voice of our members, we provide leadership and engage partners to build a comprehensive and accessible system of addiction and mental health care, and improve the well-being of individuals, families and communities in Ontario. We do this through policy work, advocacy initiatives, service development, knowledge exchange, education offerings and quality improvement work.
Why we do it
In any year, 2.5 million Ontarians will experience an addiction or mental illness challenge. Yet as many as one third of Ontarians who identify themselves as needing mental health or addiction services report not getting help, or having their needs only partially met. Those who do reach out for help often face significant wait times for services. While mental illness and addiction represent 10% of the burden of disease, around 6% of Ontario’s public investment in health care addresses these problems.
We are a network of 200 Members in Ontario working together to build a comprehensive and accessible system of addiction and mental health care.
Our members provide a range of community-based addiction and mental health services and supports that help Ontarians with their recovery. These include:
- supportive housing
- residential addiction treatment
- case management, counselling
- peer and family support
- employment programs
- withdrawal management
- community treatment
AMHO Strategic Plan 2020-2023
At AMHO, we recognize that as an association, our plan is an extension of our members needs and priorities, as well as their commitment and expertise in serving people with addiction and mental illness. As part of our 2020-2023 Strategic Plan, we engaged our members in order to ultimately create a plan that is a true reflection of their voices from across the province.
Our plan is grounded in the input of our membership, staff, people with lived experience, families and caregivers, partners, system leaders and our Board members. Our approach was to focus on our many strengths, while also acknowledging the need to position the organization in a way that will enable it to sustainably deliver on its promise to its members and the people of Ontario.
AMHO strongly believes that our refreshed vision, mission and priorities will allow us to build on our tremendous success to date, and will allow the organization to continue to be a trusted provincial voice for addiction and mental health.
Together in Challenging Times
We are pleased to release our Annual Report 2019/2020, which shares highlights of what we have accomplished together.
This year’s annual report highlights progress made in different categories:
- Strategic Plan
- Advocacy & Engagement
- Member Support
- Public Awareness & Mobilization
- Policy & Research
- Quality Improvement
View previous annual reports:
Nancy Chamberlain - President
Thunder Bay Counselling
Nancy Chamberlain is the Executive Director of Thunder Bay Counselling since 1991 with oversight for a budget of 4.3M and 29 unique services. Program areas include counselling and psychotherapy; addiction and mental health; victim services, child and youth services; financial counselling and employee assistance programs. Nancy has extensive experience in organizational leadership, governance, policy development and strategic planning. She has held numerous governance roles with community, provincial and national boards of directors for non-profit organizations such as Family Service Ontario and the Canadian Centre for Accreditation. She is currently past chair of Children’s Centre Thunder Bay and a board member of Thunder Bay and Area Victim Services. Nancy is co-chair of the Thunder Bay District Mental Health and Addiction Network and an active participant in community system planning initiatives. Nancy received a Victim Services Award of Distinction in 2013 and the Queen’s Jubilee Award in 2002.
Brad Davey - Treasurer
ConnexOntario Health Services Information
Brad Davey joined ConnexOntario Health Services Information as Executive Director in January 2006. His background includes several senior management positions in both the private and public sectors. Prior to taking up his duties at ConnexOntario, he was the South West Region Program Manager with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.
ConnexOntario operates the Drug and Alcohol Helpline, the Ontario Problem Gambling Helpline, the Mental Health Helpline, and the Greater Toronto Police Access Line as well several other websites and web-enabled appointment booking applications.
Brad is a film buff and has a great interest in all things military.
Natalie Aubin - Director
Administrative Director-Mental Health and Addictions
Health Sciences North | Horizon Santé-Nord
Natalie has held a leadership role with Health Sciences North for close to 8 years. Natalie Aubin is the Administrative Director for the Mental Health and Addictions program with Health Sciences North. In this role, she leads over 350 staff working on interdisciplinary mental health and addictions teams throughout the Sudbury, Manitoulin & East Algoma Districts. In this role, Natalie has also championed the introduction and implementation of many new regional programs aimed at improving access to quality care and services across North East Ontario. During her time at Health Sciences North, she also served as Regional Cancer Program Director for the North East. Prior to working at Health Sciences North, she held various positions in a variety of settings including, mental health and child welfare, community and public health and academia.
Natalie is passionate about working with communities to develop and grow mental health services and programs across the region to ensure equitable access for all. Natalie is a Board Member with Addictions and Mental Health Ontario (AMHO) and the Association for General Hospital Psychiatric Services of Ontario (AGHPS) where she brings the voice of the North. She is also an active member of many regional and local communities such as the North East Mental Health and Addictions Advisory Council which holds oversight for strategic system level improvements across the region. Natalie holds a special interest in planning for francophone health services.
Her academic background has been focused on health and human development across the lifespan. Natalie holds a Baccalaureate degree in Psychology, a Masters degree in Human Development and a Doctorate in Human Studies with a minor specialization in Interdisciplinarity. Her research interests include cognitive development and learning, francophone health, population health and well-being across the lifespan and healthy aging.
Nick Boyce - Director
Ontario Harm Reduction Network
Nicholas obtained a B.Sc. in Psychology from Dalhousie University. In 1999, while working at Canadian Blood Services, he became a trained volunteer with the TRIP! Project. In this capacity, he provided safer sex and safer drug use information and supplies to people in Toronto’s rave and nightclub scenes. Subsequently, he worked with the AIDS Committee of Toronto, as the Gay Men’s Harm Reduction Coordinator and was actively involved with the formation of the ‘Toronto Gay / Bisexual Men’s Crystal Meth Task Force’. Currently, he is the Director for the Ontario HIV and Substance Use Training Program, providing harm reduction training and capacity building to health organizations across Ontario, as well as supporting a provincial network of 50 Injection Drug Use and Hepatitis C outreach workers. For several years he was Chair of the community grant review panel for the City of Toronto’s ‘Drug Prevention Community Investment Program’, is past Vice President of the Board for Addictions and Mental Health Ontario, is a member of the Research Group on Drug Use – Toronto (RGDU), identifies as a person who uses drugs, and has lived experience with brain injury, resulting from a 2014 sports-related concussion that continues to affect him.
Lorri Lowe - Director
Director, Administrative Services and Chief Financial Officer
Lorri Lowe is currently the Director, Administrative Services and Chief Financial Officer at ConnexOntario. Lorri is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA, CMA) as well as a Fellow and Life member of CPA Ontario and also holds the Chartered Director (C.Dir) designation. She has extensive governance experience currently serving as CMHA-EM Treasurer and previously serving as Chair of CMA Ontario, CMA Canada and as a member on several other professional and community boards.
Robin McAndrew - Director
Director of Addictions and Mental Health Services
Sandy Hill Community Health Centre
Robin has held a variety of leadership positions in community based health care over the past 23 years. In her current role as the Director of Addictions and Mental Health Services, she oversees a counselling and social services team specializing in concurrent disorders and a specialty clinic focussing on addictions, mental health and primary care for at-risk youth. In previous roles, she has worked in the Community Health sector as an Associate Executive Director, a Director of Primary Care and a Director of Health Promotion.
Robin is active the regional and Provincial levels, providing input and leadership on systems alignment activities that span the mental health, addictions and primary care sectors. She currently co-Chairs the Champlain Addictions Coordinating Body and is a member of the a variety of committees and working groups including the Champlain Coordinated Access Working Group, the Primary Care Working Group of the Mental Health and Addiction Leadership Council and the Champlain Staged Screening and Assessment Working group She is frequently called upon to represent the Association of Ontario Health Centres at Provincial and system alignment consultations that impact the provision of addiction and mental health services.
Our increasingly sophisticated understanding of the interrelationship between addictions, mental health and primary care poises the sector for a time of great and positive change and AMHO is known for its energetic, thoughtful and strategic leadership. Robin is honoured to put her name forward for this opportunity to support the further
Lori Spadorcia - Director
Addiction Services for York Region
Lori is the Executive Vice-President of Public Affairs and Partnerships and Chief Strategy Officer at CAMH.
A passionate advocate, Lori is changing the conversation about mental health, improving awareness and understanding of mental illness and working with governments and communities to improve health systems and policy. She supports the alignment of mission critical activities designed to be responsive to CAMH’s many stakeholders and is engaging partners and resources to better position the hospital to make a sustainable system contribution to mental health.
As a former senior political advisor, Lori has advanced public policy in areas such as early learning, child care, skills, and innovation. She is devoted to building healthy communities and driving social change.
Johanne Levesque - Vice-President & Chair of the Governance Committee
Rideauwood Addiction and Family Services
Johanne Levesque is the Executive Director of Rideauwood Addiction and Family Services, a communitybased treatment centre that offers prevention, education, group and individual treatment programs along a harm reduction continuum. Rideauwood serves individuals and their loved ones affected by substance use, addiction and mental health issues in Ottawa and the surrounding region.
Johanne’s commitment to improving the health and well-being of individuals and families has served as a backdrop for her professional and volunteer activities for over thirty years. She began her professional career in nursing as an inpatient psychiatric nurse working with youth and families and has also worked in public health, community care and public administration. Her understanding of communities and approach to change leadership have been shaped by her experiences as a health care professional, a policy advisor, a manager in the federal public service and at the City of Ottawa and the co-founder of a successful of strategic management practice where she worked, for more than a decade, with organizations and progressive thinkers across the private, public and not-for-profit sectors.
Johanne is also an active community volunteer and advocate, who has a long history of serving on boards of directors of major organizations that include the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (where she served 4 years as Board Chair), the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, the Ontario Centre of Excellence for Child and Youth Mental Health (at CHEO) and the Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa.
Johanne has successfully delivered on her diverse mandates, always with the same set of values – a systems thinker, focused on building compassionate, effective health care services that puts the needs and voices of clients and families at the centre and also actively engages them in their care and recovery. She is well known for her commitment to excellence, her ability to bring together diverse groups, connect genuinely with others and her passion for making a difference.
Johanne holds a Bachelor’s in Nursing Science from Ottawa University, a Master’s of Public Administration from Queen’s University and a CHE designation from the Canadian College of Health Leaders.
Garry Laws - Secretary
Chief Executive Officer
Addictions and Mental Health Services Hastings Prince Edward
Garry Laws is the Chief Executive Officer of a very recently amalgamated Addictions and Mental Health Services Hastings Prince Edward organization. He has extensive experience working with organizations that offer a comprehensive range of services including clinical, behavioral, residential, residential treatment and day services in the Hamilton, Niagara, Brant, Haldimand/Norfolk regions for children, youth and adults. He has been serving in senior leadership/management roles since 1986, providing effective vision and direction to Boards, staff, families, and consumers in a broad continuum of programs, supports and services. He has excellent relationship with Boards, Ministry and LHIN representatives and is seen as a systems change agent.
Mike Beauchesne - Director
Dave Smith Youth Treatment Centre
Mike Beauchesne is the Executive Director of the Dave Smith Youth Treatment Centre in Ottawa. He has been with the DSYTC for nearly two decades and has worked in various clinical and leadership capacities during his tenure, including: Addiction Therapist, Clinical Coordinator and Executive VP – Clinical Services. A strong proponent of evidence-based practices and the personal and professional development of self and others, Mike enjoys working with a local, regional, provincial and national focus to help improve the lives of those who are impacted by mental health and addiction issues.
Mike possesses an Honours degree in Psychology from Carleton University, an M.Ed. (Counselling) from the University of Ottawa and an MBA from Carleton’s Sprott School of Business. Mike is also a Certified Canadian Counsellor (CCC) with the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association.
Carol Lambie - Director
President & CEO
Waypoint Center for Mental Health Care
Carol Lambie was appointed as President and CEO of Waypoint Centre for Mental Health Care in Penetanguishene in 2009, after providing support in this role on an interim basis to lead the 301 bed hospital through divestment from the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care in 2008 to a new public hospital corporation. She has more than 30 years of experience in the health care sector in a variety of roles providing strategic and operational transformational leadership.
Carol is a member of the Chartered Professional Accountants Association of Ontario and Canada and the Canadian College of Health Leaders. She has also completed a Certificate in Mental Health Law from Osgoode Hall Law School, York University as well as the ICD-Rotman Directors Education Program.
Carol advocates for access to quality care across the health care sector, and specifically across the continuum of care for mental health and addictions. She is the current chair of Addictions and Mental Health Ontario, a member of the Ontario Hospital Association board of directors and chairs the OHA Mental Health and Addictions Provincial Leadership Council, past chair of the Catholic Health Association of Ontario, and regionally leads the North Simcoe Muskoka LHIN Mental Health and Addictions committee.
Penny Marrett - Director
Addiction Services for York Region
Penny Marrett, Executive Director of Addiction Services for York Region (ASYR), has been in the not-for-profit sector for nearly 40 years. Since joining ASYR in 2014, the agency has grown by leaps and bounds and is now one of the largest community health service providers of addiction services in Ontario. In 2017, ASYR was chosen to be the lead agency for addictions for York Region, North York and South Simcoe.
Penny’s career has spanned 38 years; all of it in the not-for-profit sector. She has held a number of leadership positions in the voluntary sector and is a strong believer in the importance of the role that the not-for-profit sector can play in responding to community needs and public policy development.
Over the years, Penny has also been an active volunteer. Her volunteer experience includes the Canadian Soccer Association, the Windsor Family Health Team, the National Youth Orchestra of Canada, the Trillium Chapter of the Canadian Society of Association Executive and the Distress Centres of the Toronto, among others.
Elizabeth Price - Director
Toronto Harbour Light Ministries and Homestead Addiction Services
Elizabeth Price has over twenty years of experience working with men and women struggling with substance use and mental illness as well as members of their families. Presently, the Executive Director of Toronto Harbour Light Ministries and Homestead Addiction Services, Elizabeth has also worked there as a Program Director and the Executive Director of The Salvation Army Homestead. She has been working with a with a broad range of stakeholders, including funders and health care providers to improve the access of diverse population groups (e.g. pregnant and parenting women, youth, seniors, aboriginal, ethnic minority groups, etc.) to care. She has experience with issues related to governance and management of non-profit organizations through her role as a board member of Ontario Multifaith Council and Addictions Ontario. Her volunteer experience also extends to organizations such as Provincial Council of Women of Ontario, National Council of Women of Canada and Mental Health and Addictions Network, Central East LHIN.
Contact & Staff
Please note, staff are currently working offsite and our office is closed due to COVID-19.
1400-180 Dundas Street West
Toronto, ON M5G 1Z8
Monday to Friday, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
Addictions and Mental Health Ontario (AMHO)
Toronto, ON M5G 1Z8
Excellence through Quality Improvement Project (E-QIP)
The Alliance for Healthier Communities is Ontario’s voice for community-governed primary health care. We represent 106 community-governed primary health care organizations. Our membership includes Ontario’s Community Health Centres, Aboriginal Health Access Centres, Community Family Health Teams and Nurse Practitioner-Led Clinics.
CMHA Ontario contributes knowledge, resources and skills to provincial policy development and implementation and promotes mental health in collaboration with others. CMHA Ontario further equitable access to mental health services and champion the reduction of mental health disparities. It works closely with 31 local branches across the province to support consumers and families of individuals with mental illnesses, dual diagnosis and concurrent disorders.
The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) is Canada’s largest mental health and addiction teaching hospital, as well as one of the world’s leading research centres in the area of addiction and mental health. CAMH combines clinical care, research, education, policy development and health promotion to help transform the lives of people affected by mental health and addiction issues.
Children’s Mental Health Ontario (CMHO) works to identify and develop solutions to important policy issues affecting the child and youth mental health sector. We represent close to 100 accredited children’s mental health agencies that provide treatment and support to infants, children, youth and families.