Baycrest receives second major gift of $1M from The Geoffrey H. Wood Foundation

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Toronto, ON – The Mood and Related Disorders Clinic at Baycrest Health Sciences has received a second major gift of $1 million from The Geoffrey H. Wood Foundation.

The Toronto-based foundation’s first gift of $1 million in 2004 provided the seed money to create the clinic which has provided comprehensive, quality mental health care to adults aged 65-plus across Ontario. In just under a decade, the Baycrest clinic has established itself as one of Canada’s leading models of care for older adults struggling with depression, stress, anxiety, chronic illness, pain and bereavement.

The new gift from the Wood Foundation will be matched by an additional $1 million from the Baycrest Foundation. The funding will enable the Mood and Related Disorders Clinic to help more vulnerable seniors across the province and conduct new research exploring the benefits of non-drug therapies such as mindfulness-based stress reduction and problem-solving therapy in older populations.

“We had a wonderful experience with Dr. David Conn and his team in helping to establish the Clinic with our first gift. We kept in touch and thought we could now help to encourage new advances in treatment. We are pleased to be able to collaborate with Drs. Conn and Cindy Grief in their exciting new endeavours,” said John A. Broley, president of The Geoffrey H. Wood Foundation.

“We are very grateful to the Wood Foundation for their generous support of this program. The new funding will allow us to serve more individuals suffering from mood disorders, utilizing a broad array of innovative interventions,” said Dr. Conn, vice-president of Education at Baycrest, professor in the Department of Psychiatry at University of Toronto, and co-chair of the Canadian Coalition for Seniors’ Mental Health National Guidelines project.

The new funding will support the hiring of additional staff to run extra clinics and provide problem-solving and mindfulness group therapy, and assist with clinical research studies exploring the effectiveness of non-drug therapies for older adults with mood disorders. The Wood Foundation gift will also enable the clinic to increase the frequency of its telepsychiatry consultations and follow-ups to remote and underserviced areas of the province, and launch a new Geriatric Mental Health Website (in early 2014) that provides educational resources to older adults and their caregivers.

“This is an incredible opportunity for our clinic. With the Wood Foundation’s gift we’ll have the resources to explore innovative non-pharmacological approaches to seniors’ mental health and expand our outreach virtually,” said Dr. Grief, medical director of the Mood and Related Disorders Clinic. 

About Baycrest Health Sciences
Headquartered on a 22-acre campus and fully affiliated with the University of Toronto, Baycrest is unique in the world, combining a comprehensive system of care for aging adults, one of the world’s top research institutes in cognitive neuroscience (the Rotman Research Institute), dedicated centres focused on mitigating the impact of age-related illness and impairment, and unmatched global knowledge exchange and commercialization capacity.

About The Geoffrey H. Wood Foundation
The Geoffrey H. Wood Foundation, a private charitable foundation, was founded by the late Geoffrey H. and Edith A. Wood in 1987 with the proceeds from the sale of the G. H. Wood & Company which was known coast-to-coast by its slogan ‘Sanitation for the Nation’. The Foundation strives to enhance the quality of human life by investing in projects that provoke positive change and have a lasting effect on the lives of the people they touch.

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For more information on this press release, please contact:
Kelly Connelly, Senior Media Officer
Baycrest Health Sciences
kconnelly@baycrest.org
416-785-2432