This week, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), Canada’s largest mental health and addiction teaching hospital and a world leading research centre in this field, released the findings from the latest survey in our collaborative project, “Examining the Impact of COVID-19 on Mental Health and Substance Use among Canadians”. This project began in May 2020, after we met with the team at CAMH to find opportunities to give back during the early days of COVID-19. We couldn’t make PPE, or develop a vaccine, but we could provide data. And with CAMH as our partners, we could help shed light on the very real mental health effects of the pandemic on Canadians.

In order to fulfil our vision of making this project about giving back, all parties agreed to making the data completely open and free to the public through the Methodify platform. Since that first survey was completed nearly two years ago, over 1,200 unique individuals have accessed the data, and continue to today.

These individuals have come from everywhere: students, professors, healthcare workers, governmental organizations, corporate brands, banks, and non-profits. They have come from organizations such as the Office of the Prime Minister, University of Toronto, Health Canada, Manulife, Ipsos, L’Oréal, and the National Post, to name just a few.

When we first began this project with CAMH, we never imagined its impact would reach so far or last so long. We have heard first hand that the data is being used in numerous ways, including coursework in universities, to apply for grants in non-profits, to inform colleagues on the impact of COVID on clients, to advise on mental health of secondary students during COVID, and to better prepare healthcare professionals for ramifications and expectations.

We could not have asked for better partners in this endeavour than CAMH. We are so grateful that they agreed to go on this journey with us and to take to the leap of faith in making all of the data available free of charge.

The latest set of data will be made available to the public on February 8th. To access the previous surveys, sign up here.