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Basic Needs

Safety is a prerequisite for wellness, and safety has many different components. The most basic is physical safety – things like shelter, food and water. Many families with young children struggle to meet even their family’s basic physical needs.

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Breaking the Cycle​

Trauma that you experienced in your childhood will be written in the DNA of your great-grandchildren and increase their risk for physical and mental health illnesses throughout their lives.

But it doesn’t have to be that way.

Baby Breastfeeding
Infant Feeding and the Fourth  Trimester

The process of becoming a mother doesn't end when the baby is born!  The first 3 months after birth is a critical time where important changes happen in the brains of mothers and their newborns.  

Partner Services

Our service users can access a wide range of OHIP-covered services offered by our partners at Prisma Health Care Collaborative. These may include:

  • primary care

  • contraception and sexual health

  • prenatal and obstetrical care

  • diabetes prevention and management

  • psychiatric care

  • dermatology

Programs and Services

Modular Homes

Basic Needs

  • Provide breastfeeding support to all new mothers, whether or not they can pay for private lactation support.

  • Formula supplementation for families who are not able to breastfeed, or for those whose children have specific dietary needs that require specialized formulas which are often much more expensive.

  • Healthy food for mothers – to support breastfeeding and ensure that the one caring for the newborn has their needs met.

  • Healthy food for fathers, partners and other children – it takes a village to raise a healthy child, and that village can only provide support if they themselves are well.

  • Safety gates, bedding, clothing, bibs, swaddles, baby blankets, baby swings, strollers – and so much more! If families struggle to pay for housing, heat and food, we know they are also struggling to find these items.

  • Finding safe and appropriate housing is sometimes difficult even for those who have means! Because of long wait lists for subsidized housing, even families who are urgently in need can wait 3 OR MORE years for a unit. Shelters are often full and are not where anyone would want to be with their newborn baby. Our staff help families navigate the housing support programs, develop the skills to search and successfully rent units on the market, and work with them to keep their housing.

Infant Feeding and the Fourth Trimester

There are many misconceptions about the 4th trimester that lead mothers to feel like they and their bodies are somehow flawed or defective.  They are often told that things should be happening faster or slower than they are, that they shouldn't trust their instincts, and society's ideas of "helping" during that time can be the exact opposite of what a new mom needs.

We ourselves have experienced many of these - and we are on a mission to change the narrative.

Did you know:

  • that for the majority of women (except those with specific medical conditions), their breasts are making milk my week 17 of pregnancy?  

  • it is normal for a mother's mature milk supply to take until day 3 after a normal vaginal delivery, and day 5 after a C-section to come in?  It can take even longer if things like prematurity, gestational diabetes, or delivery complications exist.

  • a newborn's stomach is only the size of a cherry?

  • the "shhh" sound that mothers make instinctually mimics the sound of breathing that the baby heard every day during the pregnancy?

  • the circadian rhythm of babies doesn't sync up with night/day cycles until about 1 year of age?

  • it is normal for babies to cry when they are not being held?

There is so much misinformation that sets mothers up to feel like they have failed before they even get started.  We offer to see mothers at least every 1-2 weeks in the first 3 months after delivery and help them understand the wide range of normal that exists, how to know when something really isn't right and needs a higher level of care, and support them through the normal changes that continue to occur. 


We never go back to the people we were before we became mothers - and for some this can be hard to accept.  But we know the truth - becoming a mother is a powerful, terrifying, exhilarating, and life-affirming experience that challenges us to be our best selves - and we believe with the right support, a mother is unstoppable.

Breaking the Cycle: Infant and Family Mental Health

We can change the legacy we pass on to our children!


The amazing thing about epigenetics is that we have the power to change those parts of our DNA and stop them from being passed into our children’s DNA. Through good nutrition and brain-body therapies we can reset our DNA in real-time.

In the first 5 years of life, children rely mostly on “feeling”, rather than “thinking” to direct their behaviour. The part of our brain that is responsible for thinking and planning is the frontal cortex. This part grows rapidly in the first 2 years of life, and what happens in those first few years has a huge impact on how someone’s brain functions over the rest of their lives. Children learn through emotion, and their emotions are inexorably linked to the emotions of their caregivers. This is called “co-regulation”, and is one of, if not the, most important task of parenting. Kids feel what their parents feel, but do not have their parents’ ability to think about, and understand, these feelings. This means that the most important contributor to, and predictor of, a child’s mental health, is the mental health of their parents, and this is never truer than in the first years of life.


Our mental health care system is on the verge of collapse. The COVID-19 pandemic, increased isolation and focus on individualism, increasing wealth gap, detrimental effects of social media, and so much more, combined with a lack of publicly funded access to psychotherapy and other important and well-studied ways to treat mental health conditions has created a crisis that we have never seen before. Rates of depression, anxiety, suicide, and addiction are high and climbing, and rates postpartum mental health conditions are no exception. If we were to provide the treatments that we know work to build resilience and achieve a healthy mind to parents before they become pregnant, during pregnancy, and after, those parents in turn could give their children the “co-regulation” they need for healthy brain development!


This won’t just change rates of mental health conditions for these children. We know from studies that MANY physical health conditions are a result of TOXIC stress. Some researchers estimate that preventing and treating toxic stress in childhood could lower rates of heart disease, kidney disease and stroke by ~15%, asthma, COPD and obesity by almost ¼, and unemployment by 10-20%. We provide comprehensive mental health services to families under our care – that does NOT depend on their ability to pay privately. Using a step-wise program, that follows Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, we help families build safety, learn the skills they need to manage their own emotions, process and move past their own trauma, and be the parents they want to be – the parents that their children need and deserve.


The need is so great - we need more staff, more space, and more programming. At this time, our services are limited to those who are trying to become pregnant, already pregnant or have young children.


Our dream is to be able to expand those services and help parents change those epigenetic marks and heal the trauma before it gets passed on!  Will you help?

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