There is no doubt that collectively we are living in unprecedented times as we all experience this pandemic. COVID-19 is shaping and reshaping our society and the lives of young and old alike. The pandemic has affected Eli’s Place as it has all other mental health organizations.
Last January Eli’s Place was in the process of completing its due diligence on a specific property that we were proceeding to purchase at the end of May 2020. Due to the onset of the pandemic, and with regret, our Board of Directors elected to defer the acquisition of the property, while we continue to broaden our network of supporters, expand financial resources and consider strategic partnerships that will help us meet our objectives.
The Board of Directors established three Task Groups to assist it in developing a go-forward strategic direction that considers the impact of COVID-19. The Task Groups are working on Campaign Readiness, Partnerships and Government Relations, and Social Enterprise. The Campaign Readiness Task Group is in the process of recruiting our Capital Campaign Cabinet in advance of the launch of the Capital Campaign. The Partnerships and Government Relations Task Group is developing a strategy around connecting with government agencies within the Ministry of Health as well as Members of Parliament who have input into the health and wellbeing of young adults. The Social Enterprise Task Group is exploring the applicability of Social Impact Bonds or Community Bonds as part of our Capital Campaign strategy. We are also exploring a possible community-based recovery program, initiated in Australia, that could be launched in 2021. This would provide immediate support to young adults who are currently living with mental health challenges.
Eventually located in a beautiful rural setting just outside of Toronto, Eli’s Place will be modelled after a long-established most successful program in the U.S. When it comes to fruition it will incorporate therapeutic farm work, skills training, and clinical care to bring healing and hope to young people struggling with mental illness. Keeping this goal in mind, especially during this challenging pandemic, is of utmost importance to the Board.
We are most appreciative of your ongoing support as we move forward during these challenging times. We will keep you advised of our progress as we advance toward our goal of opening Eli’s Place.