A unique idea

community of practice is defined as a group of people who share a concern or a passion for something they do, and learn how to do it better by interacting regularly. And this describes the Addictions & Mental Health Network of Champlain (AMHNC) to a T. Unlike any other LHIN-related committee or network across Ontario, equal representation from all four sectors — Addiction Services, Mental Health Services, Family Caregivers and Clients — is part of the Network’s foundation. It is what sets us apart.

The responsibility of the Network is to provide guidance and balanced direction, for those seeking to improve the Addiction and Mental Health System within the Champlain LHIN. In doing so we strive to set an example to the remainder of the Ontario in how various sectors can sustain a better relationship to improve the system for all. The role of the Network will change over time to reflect the needs of its members, but the core principles of respect and cooperation will remain the same.


That the Champlain region’s addiction and mental health services provide hope and dignity, foster recovery and set the standard of care for the province of Ontario.


To carry out our roles and responsibilities in a manner that reflects and fosters: transparency; integrity; trust; respect; inclusiveness; responsiveness; and accountability.


To actively pursue collaborative opportunities that help to ensure the Champlain region’s addiction and mental health system is evidence-based and truly client and family centred

AMHNC History

snapshots of
how the amhnc meets its mandate


One of the cornerstones of our meetings is the opportunity to expand our knowledge and learn from each other. For example, in recent months, we’ve looked at: the growing opioid crisis from the perspective of the medical community, addiction services and an addict; Ontario’s new structured psychotherapy program; our LHIN’s only nurse practitioner-led clinic and the innovative way it provides diagnosis and care for those with mental health concerns; and brain plasticity, as it applies to mental health and addictions.Periodically, we also hold a “show & tell” event to showcase what our members have been up to… and foster more in-depth, one-on-one conversations.

client & family

To help us fulfill our role as an agent for systemic change, the AMHNC is supported by the Client Advisory Committee of Champlain (CACC) and the Family Advisory Committee (FAC). Together, they provide ongoing advice, informed discourse, lived experience and a deep empathy with the challenges faced by addicts and  those using mental health services our region. These two bodies meet independently on a regular basis and send representatives to the AMHNC table. If you would like more information on either group, visit their web sites: www.fac-champlain.ca or www.cacchamplain.com


The family and client groups have also demonstrated their commitment to improving the system at a grassroots level. Out of the Ashes We Rise, the brainchild of the CACC, is an inspiring collection stories of hope and recovery. And their “warm feet, warm hearts” campaign distributes fresh pairs of socks (that include key public service messages) to Ottawa’s homeless population. Likewise, the FAC undertook an in-depth study of the region’s discharge planning practices and provided recommendations for low-cost enhancements. The group also produced the Roller Coaster Guide to Recovery to help families, clients and service providers navigate Champlain’s addictions and mental health system.

member Testimonials

Cynthia Clark

“The AMHNC has opened a window for open exchange of ideas, perspectives, solution seeking and partnerships.  It has given the family caregivers a direct voice to those who can bring about positive changes to service delivery in Champlain.”

(Chair, Ontario Family Caregiver Advisory Network)

Suzanne Filion, Ph.D.

“AMHNC is about collaboration, sharing, learning and growing. Respect and inclusiveness are ingrained in the fibers of this network composed of competent and empathic members that strives to make a real difference in the lives of those in need and in our communities. It’s also the place to learn about provincial opportunities and regional initiatives. AMHNC is well worth the investment of time and energy!”

(Director of Strategic Development
Hawkesbury and District General Hospital)

ryan evans

“The AHMNC recognizes the valuable insights and other potential contributions of people who have already successfully navigated the healthcare system. I am able, in my sobriety, to help inform and shape decisions that will affect others who are seeking similar healing. I attend these meetings to ensure those who follow have an easier and more successful experience receiving the care they desperately need.”

(Chair, Client Advisory Committee of Champlain)

karen hanna

“The AMHNC information is invaluable in supporting information & programs delivered by the Ottawa Network for Borderline Personality Disorder. Often families have questions that go beyond our scope and we use the information on this website as one of go-to resources for valid, current and impactful information.” 

(Ottawa Network for Borderline Personality Disorder)