Helping Ourselves through Peer Support & Employment

Brief History – Milestones

H.O.P.E. has been proudly delivering mental health peer support and employment services in Brant County for over 20 years.

1991 CMHA Brant opens ‘Quick Bite Catering & Take Out’

  • Social worker hired as project manager.
  • Psychosocial rehabilitation focused training & work-related life skills provided.
  • Long-term employment at minimum wage.
  • Funding received – 2 consumer assistant managers hired.
  • Advisory Committee established (management, consumers & members of business community) meeting monthly.

1993 Begin operating as an independent Consumer Survivor Initiative (CSI)

  • Brantford Vocational Training Association incorporated (BVTA).
  • Quick Bite business divested from CMHA to BVTA.
  • Independent Board of Directors established – consumers play a more directive role.
  • Business included catering and restaurant sales employing 18 to 20 consumers.

1998  One year HRDC grant received to support consumer initiatives

  • Brant Mainstream Mental Health Wellness Network established.
  • ‘Kindred Spirits’ peer support group organized and ran for one year.

1999  CMHA Brant asked to provide sponsorship to BVTA

  • Program Advisory Committee established to provide advice to CMHA Board

2000  Brantford Vocational Training Association receives Trillium Grant

  • One-to-one peer support services offered to clients leaving hospital
  • Part-time coordinator hired
  • Volunteer peer support training initiated (part of research project)

2003  Quick Bite closed due to budget short-falls

  • Director of Business Development hired to develop new businesses

2004  New profitable businesses were opened

  • QuickKlean cleaning business established in 2004, expanded to include moving services

2006  BVTA part of regional CSI network – input to HNHB LHIN on consumer issues

  • Peer support workers expanded to four
  • Established agreement with Brant Community Healthcare System to provide one-on-one peer support to inpatients – WE CARE

2009  Decision made to rename BVTA to Helping Ourselves through Peer Support & Employment (HOPE)

  • Started delivering Special Events

2010  QuickKlean expanded to include re-sale store

  • Program Manager becomes  OPDI certified  peer support trainer.

2011    Name officially change to H.O.P.E.

2013   Strategic planning process sets 5 year direction.

2015   Started “After Hours” Saturday afternoon peer support Drop-In at Phoenix Place.

2019   H.O.P.E. hosts its First Annual Walk for H.O.P.E. fundraising event