ASI 2020

Atlantic Policy Forum on Mental Health Promotion

August 24-26, 2020

Upstream Investment in Mental Health Promotion: The Answer to the Mental Health Crisis


The “new normal” has limited our ability to gather in large groups spanning provincial borders, but it has also increased public awareness about mental health and wellness, and the need for upstream action. With this in mind, the ASI Board of Directors has decided to move the party online!
We’re excited about the possibilities this presents for bringing together even more voices from across Atlantic Canada! ASI 2020 will be a virtual event that includes speakers, panelists, workshops, small group discussions, social and networking opportunities, the Atlantic Showcase, and our Youth Leadership Program.

Be part of a movement that brings together people who are capable of influencing and implementing changes at the policy and community levels! ASI 2020 aims to increase understanding of the importance of infant, child and youth mental health for the whole of society, and foster policy actions to influence upstream investment in support of mental health.

Develop skills to build capacity for upstream policy development and implementation
Share ideas and engage in dialogue, building on evidence and best practice
Help build an agenda and resources for policy development and implementation
Collaborate and have fun with diverse participants
Learn from Indigenous leaders & youth advocates passionate about mental health promotion
Expand your networks in Atlantic Canada and beyond

Who will attend?
Politicians, public servants, health practitioners, private sector, media, unions, academics, educators, social agencies, community organizations, Indigenous leaders, youth leaders and the general public… everyone interested in collaborating to improve mental health!

ASI 2020 will build on the strengths of the past five years of successful ASI programming on mental health promotion, and consultations to be held this spring, and move action to the next level by producing resources that support upstream policy development and implementation to promote the mental health of infants, children and youth.

The Forum will model collaboration in Atlantic Canada, expand our understanding of Indigenous ways of knowing, link with the Sustainable Development Goals, and move action in Atlantic Canada to the next level by producing a policy agenda and resources that support upstream policy development and implementation. Highlights include learnings from the Mental Health Commission of Canada’s (MHCC) early childhood mental health project, best practice from our Atlantic Canada consultations this spring, evidence from the National Collaborating Centre (NCC) on Healthy Public Policy, and best practice from Quebec.

“When we think of mental health we often think of emotional difficulties and mental health problems and how we can resolve a crisis once it has occurred. This thinking demands an investment after the fact or ‘downstream’. ‘Upstream’ thinking means investing wisely for future success and addressing the broader determinants of mental health at a population level. We view mental health as a resource for all that requires a whole-of-government and whole-of-society approach. Although there is evidence to support an ‘upstream’ view, our current investment in policies and practice is ‘downstream’ and we will need a change in public and political support to think and invest differently.”
– Professor Margaret Barry, ASI 2017 keynote speaker,
WHO Collaborating Centre for Health Promotion Research, National University of Ireland, Galway

The ASI 2020 Forum will be held online from August 24-26 in Charlottetown, PEI, streaming from the unceded ancestral territory of the Mi’kmaq people. Materials in French and simultaneous interpretation will be available for many presentations. A Youth Leadership Program will also be offered.

Registration $325