Launched as a pilot project in 2005, ReachOut quickly grew into a year-round program with a dedicated team of organizers and professional presenters. The generosity of our funders and sponsors lets us present our award-winning show FREE to schools across the entire province. Each year we reach tens of thousands of youth audience members with a message helping them to spot and stop psychosis early.
What we do
- ReachOut is a one hour assembly presentation full of life-saving information, brain science and music.
- The show is presented by professional musicians and performers who have years of experience performing for youth.
- ReachOut is geared to secondary and post-secondary students, ages 14 and up.
- The sensory-rich, interactive show is designed for seated groups of 300 or more, in an assembly format.
- It is presented free of charge to school across British Columbia and has also toured to the Yukon Territories
Why is early medical intervention in psychosis so critical?
Psychosis is a brain condition that affects a person’s ability to process information from their senses. There is mounting research to show that the sooner youth with symptoms of psychosis receive medical attention the faster and more complete their recovery. Prolonged untreated psychosis can have profound social, employment and health impacts. More information
ReachOut works best when it is offered to the entire student body. This creates a whole school approach, which studies have found to be the most effective way to provide support, timely identification and help for young people affected by psychosis.
Psychosis will affect 3 % of your student body under the age of 25.
Psychosis has no borders. It is 6 times more common than diabetes and affects men and women equally. Yet, misconceptions about mental illness can make it hard for young people to get help. Most experience the first symptoms during high school or early university. It can be a scary and intimidating time for affected individuals as well as those close to them.
ReachOut helps students who may be experiencing psychosis as well those close to them.
They learn that:
- Psychosis impacts us all: it affects 3% of the population (6 times more common than diabetes) and the first onset usually occurs between 16 and 25
- Psychosis has many causes: Bipolar Disorder, Schizophrenia, Depression, head trauma, drug use and stress can all trigger psychosis, especially in those with a genetic vulnerability
- There is treatment: Recovery is expected and early intervention is key.
ReachOut gives young people the information they need by teaching them:
- Basic symptoms of psychosis
- What it might feel like to have psychosis
- What psychosis looks like to someone else (how a person with psychosis might act)
Most importantly, young people learn to seek appropriate medical treatment for themselves and for their friends.
All medical information presented has been vetted by our medical advisory committee made up of staff from BC Early Psychosis Intervention clinics.
View the Prescribed Learning Outcomes fulfilled by ReachOut Psychosis..
Resources for Families and Teachers
In addition to the school concert for youth, ReachOut also provides information for teachers, counselors and parents.
What People are Saying
“I think the ReachOut Psychosis tour is doing fabulous work, both for promoting early treatment and for reducing stigma.”
Mental Health Educator/Clinician
Early Psychosis Intervention Program
About Here to Help
The BC Schizophrenia Society is a member of the BC Partners for Mental Health and Addictions Information. The BC Partners for Mental Health and Addictions Information are a group of seven leading provincial mental health and addictions nonprofit agencies. The seven partners are Anxiety BC, BC Schizophrenia Society, Centre for Addictions Research of BC, Canadian Mental Health Association’s BC Division, F.O.R.C.E. Society for Kids Mental Health, Jessie’s Legacy of Family Services of the North Shore, and Mood Disorders Association of BC. Since 2003, we’ve been working together to help individuals and families better prevent, recognize and manage mental health and substance use problems. BC Partners work is funded by BC Mental Health and Addiction Services, an agency of the Provincial Health Services Authority. We also receive some additional support from the Ministry of Children and Family Development. The BC Partners are behind the acclaimed HeretoHelp website. Visit us at www.heretohelp.bc.ca .