Actions and Commitments

Call to Action # 18: Health (18-24)

Ontario Connecting More Indigenous Youth to Mental Health Services in Sagamok Anishnawbek First Nation

January 9, 2024

New Youth Wellness Hub to Provide Culturally Safe Care Closer to Home

Table of Contents

  1. Content
  2. Quick Facts
  4. Additional Resources
  5. Related Topics

SAGAMOK ANISHNAWBEK FIRST NATION — The Ontario government is making it faster and easier for young people to connect to mental health and substance use support by launching a new Youth Wellness Hub to serve Sagamok Anishnawbek First Nation and surrounding areas. This is one of the eight new hubs the government is adding to the 14 already created since 2020, bringing the total to 22 across the province.

“Expanding our network of Youth Wellness Hubs is another step our government is taking to ensure Ontarians of all ages have convenient access to the highest-quality mental health and addictions supports, when and where they need them,” said Michael Tibollo, Associate Minister of Mental Health and Addictions. “We are thrilled to be launching the first Youth Wellness Hub designed by and for an Indigenous community. Culturally appropriate care is a core tenet of the Roadmap to Wellness, and we will continue making investments to improve access to these services for Indigenous communities across Ontario.”

Youth aged 12 to 25 in Sagamok Anishnawbek First Nation and surrounding areas can visit the hub to connect to convenient and free mental health, substance use, primary care and traditional healing and wellness services in a safe, youth-friendly, welcoming space. Young people can drop in for counselling or peer support, book an appointment or access services virtually.

The new Sagamok Anishnawbek First Nation Youth Wellness Hub is being co-designed alongside local Sagamok Anishnawbek youth, families, leaders and partners and will replace the current temporary building. The hub is an example of successful community collaboration to adapt the Youth Wellness Hub to address the unique needs of Indigenous youth and their families.

“Our government is continuing to take action to improve mental health services for communities across Ontario, and support patients and families living with mental health and addictions challenges,” said Sylvia Jones, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “As we continue to expand the number of Youth Wellness Hubs across the province, young people in Sagamok Anishnawbek First Nation will receive faster and easier access to the mental health care they need, in one convenient location, closer to home.”

With Your Health: A Plan for Connected and Convenient Care, the government is significantly expanding the number of Youth Wellness Hubs across the province to make it faster and easier for young people to connect to mental health and substance use support, primary care, social services, and more.

Quick Facts

  • The eight new Youth Wellness Hubs funded by the Addictions Recovery Fund are in Algoma Region, Kingston, London-Middlesex, Sagamok Anishnawbek First Nation, Sarnia-Lambton, Sudbury, Toronto Thorncliffe Park and West Toronto.
  • The Sagamok Anishnawbek First Nation Youth Wellness Hub will be permanently housing its services at its Youth Wellness Centre in 2024. This will achieve the community’s vision of creating a culturally safe space that places youth and their families at the center of services to address their holistic needs.
  • In 2023, the government also announced additional funding to expand pediatric services in communities across the province, which will support five additional Youth Wellness Hubs to help fill the gap in youth addictions services.
  • In 2020, Ontario released a strategy to build a world-class mental health and addictions system – Roadmap to Wellness: A Plan to Build Ontario’s Mental Health and Addictions System. Supported by a commitment to invest $3.8 billion over 10 years, Roadmap is adding capacity to meet demand, filling gaps in the care continuum, and creating a provincial infrastructure for a mental health and addictions continuum of care that connects primary, community, and acute care to better wrap around the needs of people with mental health and addictions issues.
  • In Budget 2023, Ontario is building on its historic $3.8 billion investment by providing an additional $425 million over three years. This investment will provide community-based mental health and addictions service providers funded by the Ministry of Health with a five per cent increase in base funding.
  • Since 2019-20, the government has flowed $525 million in new base funding for mental health and addictions services and supports. This funding is supporting a range of services, including child and youth mental health, community-based addictions services, supportive housing, mental health and justice, and Indigenous mental health and addictions.


“Accessible and effective mental health services in First Nation communities are essential to the wellbeing and safety of Indigenous youth. Services like the new Youth Wellness Hub in Sagamok Anishnawbek First Nation will provide culturally appropriate care to those who need it, where they need it.”

– Greg Rickford
Minister of Indigenous Affairs and Northern Development

“I am grateful to Sagamok Anishnawbek First Nation for partnering with Youth Wellness Hubs Ontario and becoming part of the YWHO network. Supporting the continued development of youth services specific to Sagamok Anishnawbek First Nation will ensure that youth will be able to access a range of health and wellness supports that have been co-designed with youth and their community. This, of course, would not be possible without the support of the Government of Ontario. Together we continue to strengthen services with and for youth throughout Ontario.”

– Dr. Jo Henderson
Executive Director, Youth Wellness Hubs Ontario (YWHO)

“The Youth Wellness Hubs of Ontario model is perfectly aligned to Sagamok Anishnawbek’s approach to integrated care through the provision of wrap around supports for youth within our community. Bringing these services to our young people directly where they are, ensures them opportunity to access integral supports through a holistic, culturally based approach that incorporates culturally relevant approaches, including land-based wellness and language learning into our integrated approach. This is the responsibility we have as Anishinawbek, to help our young people grow to be healthy of body, mind, and spirit. Partnerships like this with Ontario, providing stable and predictable support to our vulnerable populations, are a most valuable means to achieve wellbeing for all our communities. Sagamok Anishnawbek is proud to be the first Indigenous Youth Wellness Hub partner serving First Nations’ youth access to locally delivered Wellness Hub Model services.”

– Chief Angus Toulouse
Chief and Senior Administrative Officer for Sagamok Anishnawbek First Nation

Additional Resources

Related Topics


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Media Contacts

Hannah Jensen
Minister Jones’ Office

Anna Miller
Communications Branch