Here4Hope and Waterloo Region Suicide Prevention Council partner together to represent Ontario in the Mental Health Commission of Canada’s Roots of Hope program

August 20, 2019

Cambridge, ON

Today, the Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) welcomed Waterloo Wellington as the seventh community to sign on to its national Roots of Hope suicide prevention project. The five-year partnership with the MHCC, which will be led by the Waterloo Region Suicide Prevention Council (WRSPC), aims to significantly reduce suicide rates in the area.

Every year, 4,000 people in Canada take their own lives. Roots of Hope draws on international best practices while allowing communities to leverage their strengths and tailor the project to their needs. At the heart of the program are five pillars: specialized supports for individuals in need, public education and awareness, means restriction, training for community leaders, and research and evaluation.

By partnering with local organizations, Roots of Hope will equip service providers with the training and support they need to achieve community-led solutions. Here4Hope, Wellington’s suicide prevention initiative — a partnership between the Canadian Mental Health Association Waterloo Wellington and the Wellington County, as well as the Waterloo Wellington Local Health Integration Network — will also play a central role in the program’s implementation in partnership with the WRSPC.


“The concept of Roots of Hope is one of strength and community spirit — the best way to conquer the stigma and shame that have shadowed suicide for far too long. The investments made by the participating communities and provinces, and the supporting federal dollars, send the message that suicide prevention is no longer an item at the bottom of the collective agenda.” — Louise Bradley, President and CEO, Mental Health Commission of Canada

“Waterloo Region is one that truly embodies a sense of community and strength when it comes to the work of suicide prevention as it has driven and continues to support the journey of hope, help and healing.  We are proud to partner with the Roots of Hope project and continue our mission to reduce suicidal behavior and its impact on individuals, families and communities while also helping to advance the work of suicide prevention with key national partners.” – Elisa Brewer-Singh, Executive Director, Waterloo Region Suicide Prevention Council 

Quick Facts

  • Eleven people die by suicide each day in Canada
  • Suicide is the second leading cause of death among youth age 15-34
  • Suicide rates are three times higher among men compared with women
  • Up to 135 people are affected by one suicide loss, between 15 and 30 people severely
  • The average number of yearly emergency room visits for intentional self-harm within the Waterloo region between 2006-2015 was 775
  • Last year WRSPC provided funding for 261 individuals in the community to be trained in either safeTALK, ASIST or suicide to Hope