YouThrive was developed in response to a series of consultations and needs assessments conducted with key provincial organizations and stakeholders representing the education, health, health promotion, sport and recreation sectors. All sectors echoed the need to develop resource materials to support communities in addressing key health topics in a comprehensive way (for example, as per the requirements of the Ontario Public Health Standards, according to the Foundations for a Healthy School).
Partnerships were sought with leading experts in mental health, tobacco use, substance use and youth engagement, and together, CMHA Ontario, CAMH, OLA and Ophea applied for funding from the Government of Ontario’s Healthy Communities Fund.
The partnership conducted an additional needs assessment in Winter 2011 to help shape YouThrive. The 477 participating community leaders from across Ontario included educators, public health units, health promoters, recreation leaders, law enforcement leaders, and youth engagement coordinators.
YouThrive is evidence-informed, which means it draws on existing resources from four non-profit health organizations—CMHA Ontario; CAMH, OLA; and the Ontario Physical and Health Education Association (Ophea)—as well as government sources and other public health groups. Feedback from subject matter experts and community leaders helped to strengthen the resource further.