What Is Crossing Bridges?

A Free, Virtual Safe Space.

Crossing Bridges is a confidential, virtual safe space for young people aged 12-24 to:

  1. Connect virtually with an Addictions Counsellor
  2. Get information about substance use and behavioural addiction
  3. Find substance use and addiction services and supports

Crossing Bridges provides support with both substance use addiction and behavioural addiction (e.g. gambling, gaming, sex, Internet or social media use, etc.).

All services offered through Crossing Bridges, including addictions counselling, are free.

Why Does Crossing Bridges Exist?

Reducing Barriers to Support.
Young person using a laptop.

Our Mission:

To break down barriers for young people seeking support and services to address substance use and behavioural addiction.

Our Values:

  • Reducing Barriers to Service – We believe that services should be easy to access, provided in a timely manner, collaborative and flexible, and respectful of each individual’s needs, perceptions, beliefs, and choices.
  • Youth Voice – We welcome and are committed to seeking guidance and feedback from young people in the ongoing development and delivery of our services and resources. We also believe young people should be involved in the decisions that impact the services they receive and their health and well-being.
  • Harm Reduction – We recognize the value of creating safety around how, where, and what substances people use without expecting them to stop using, and support people to have choice during their path to recovery.
  • Inclusion and Non-Discrimination – We value the inherent worth, voices, and experiences of all people no matter their economic status, religion or beliefs, race, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, neurodiversity, body size or shape, citizenship, or place of origin.

Our Approach to Counselling:

  • Creating a Safe Space – We seek to reduce stigma and create a safe space where young people can reflect on and process their thoughts and feelings without judgement.
  • Strengths-Based – We are passionate about empowering young people to acknowledge their own strengths, build trust in themselves and their abilities, and develop greater autonomy. We believe that everyone can learn, adapt, and grow.
  • Trauma-Informed – We recognize that trauma can impact a person’s behaviour, mental health, and ability to engage in counselling or treatment. We walk alongside the young people we support by promoting choice, using kindness and compassion, and encouraging openness and honesty.
  • Person Centred – We believe that each young person is an expert in their own lives. We seek to meet young people were they’re at, ensure they feel heard, and work collaboratively with each individual to learn, problem-solve, and develop coping strategies that work for them.
Young person and service provider working together on a laptop.

Who Created Crossing Bridges?

How Crossing Bridges Was Designed.

Crossing Bridges was co-designed by young people in collaboration with substance use and addiction service providers.

Who Are the Lead Partners?

About the Partner Agencies.

Crossing Bridges is a partnership between:

  • CMHA Huron Perth Addiction and Mental Health Services – CMHA Huron Perth Addiction and Mental Health Services is a community-based addiction and mental health treatment centre that provides services in Huron and Perth Counties. Learn more about CMHA Huron Perth Addiction and Mental Health Services.
  • CMHA Thames Valley Addiction and Mental Health Services – CMHA Thames Valley Addiction and Mental Health Services is an integrated mental health and addiction agency that provides services to individuals aged 12 years and older across Elgin, Middlesex, and Oxford Counties. Learn more about CMHA Thames Valley Addiction and Mental Health Services.

Both CMHA Huron Perth Addiction and Mental Health Service and CMHA Thames Valley and Addiction Mental Health Services are accredited by the Canadian Centre for Accreditation.

Canadian Mental Health Association - Huron Perth Addiction and Mental Health Services

How Is Cross Bridges Funded?

About Our Funders.

Crossing Bridges is grateful for the financial support received from the Ontario Ministry of Health.