When it was created in October 1981, the Association des proches de personnes atteintes de maladie mentale de l’Estrie (association for the loved ones of those with a mental illness in the Estrie region or APPAMM-ESTRIE) was the first community resource in mental health to be established in the region. The product of joint efforts by a group of residents aware of the difficulty mental illness may pose, this young organization sought to compensate for the almost total lack of mental health resources outside of hospital walls.
The idea to provide services to the loved ones of people with a mental illness, as well as to the community as a whole, emerged from a meeting of the three main founding members.
Since the organization’s beginning, psychological support, information, and referrals have been provided by professionals through phone calls and visits to its offices. It should be noted that these services are also offered in English.
Despite insufficient financial resources, but thanks to ongoing support from the community, APPAMM-ESTRIE also works tirelessly among the public at large to demystify mental illness.
In May 1982, it organized a series of information and discussion meetings that started occurring on a monthly basis in January 1984. Through these talks, dozens of volunteer resource people are constantly and regularly disseminating information directly related to mental illness to the region’s entire population.
The support group approach for the loved ones of those with a mental illness was introduced in May 1984, with four meetings per month being held at the beginning and then two meetings per month as of September 2001. Since October 2010, these meetings have been held when a sufficient number of people are registered. This activity gives loved ones an opportunity to tell their stories and to support one another as they face challenges.
The story of our logo
Among the three founders of APPAMM-Estrie there was a young adult suffering from schizophrenia who, with few tools and plenty of imagination, built our logo from capitalized letters of the alphabet. An “O” and an upside down “U” to represent the person diagnosed with a mental illness, surrounded by “APPAMM ESTRIE” (association for the loved ones of those with a mental illness in the Estrie region).
Take another look at our logo : a person afflicted with mental illness but in the process of recovery, surrounded by their loved ones. That’s APPAMM-Estrie’s mission in a few words… or rather, in a few letters.
Since January 2005, APPAMM-ESTRIE has been providing customized training sessions on mental illnesses and their different aspects: diagnoses, treatment, helpful attitudes, recovery process, etc. in different settings (school, work, etc.). It should be noted that these services are also offered in English.
Lastly, APPAMM-ESTRIE regularly intervenes with organizations and institutions in the region, to ensure that people with a mental illness and their loved ones have access to the services to which they are entitled.
Prix Hommage à l'initiative 2016 2016 attribué par les associations-membres de la Fédération des familles et amis de la personne atteinte de la maladie mentale (FFAPAMM)
Mérite estrien Santé et éducation 2015, attribué à M. André Forest, directeur général de l'APPAMM-Estrie
Prix Reconnaissance de carrière Persillier-Lachapelle Organisme communautaire 2014 attribué à M. André Forest, directeur général de l'APPAMM-ESTRIE, remis par le Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux
2013 certification from the Fédération des familles et amis de la personne atteinte de maladie mentale (federation of families and friends of those with a mental illness or FFAPAMM), attesting that the standards in terms of APPAMM-ESTRIE’s services and administration comply with the requirements set out by the Cadre normatif des associations-membres de la FFAPAMM (normative framework for FFAPAMM member associations)
Finalist for the 1994 Persillier-Lachapelle Award for community organizations – Family Support category
Governor General’s 125th Anniversary of the Confederation of Canada Medal, awarded to Gisèle Verville, Chairperson of APPAMM-ESTRIE
1992 Grand Prix recognition award – services and resources category, presented by the Quebec Mental Illness Foundation
1990 volunteer of the year title for Sherbrooke and the region given to Gisèle Verville, Chairperson of APPAMM-ESTRIE
1987 Persillier-Lachapelle Award for the community integration and enhancement of mental health services, conferred by the Ministère de la santé et des services sociaux;
1987 volunteer organization of the year for Sherbrooke and the region
Our organization regards these marks of recognition as important indicators of the quality of the results obtained to date in its interventions with the loved ones of those with a mental illness and its awareness-raising activities among the population of the Estrie region.