Children’s Mental Health Week 2019 — Day 3 — Toronto Isn’t Everything: Mental Health Across the Province

Children’s mental health’s about more than just the stats.

The People Behind the Numbers — Canada’s Children’s Mental Health Stories

While we do talk about mental health now more than ever, with many of us, the conversation goes as far as sharing a post once a year and calling it a day.

But it’s about so much more than that. There are people behind the stats — people suffering from mental illnesses who have friends and families who care about them. There’s a whole world of untold stories out there about children’s mental health, and we hope that through this work for Children’s Mental Health Week, we can start to change that.

And sharing these stories is essential—in some parts of our province, children and youth wait upward of eighteen months for treatment for the problems they face today. The community-located mental health centres can’t keep up with the ever-growing problem—with suicide as the second-most cause of death for children and youth in Canada; inaction can prove fatal.

Kim Moran, CEO of Children’s Mental Health Ontario, puts it well:

“There are long wait lists across the province for child and youth mental health which is placing a strain on mental health service providers, hospitals, and the families turning to them for care…immediate and increased investments towards the support of young people with mental illness are needed. We can’t continue with the status quo.”

In short, it’s important that we do what we can to bring about some much-needed change… and it usually starts with a conversation.

Children’s Mental Health Week 2019 — Day 2 — Let’s Not Take Mental Health for Granted!

Children's Mental Health Week 2019 — Day 2 — Let's Not Take Mental Health for Granted! — Irwin Elman and SonTrying to take on an issue as big as children’s mental health is can be daunting. It’s a problem uniquely affecting everyone who deals with it, which means there’s no one singular way to solve it.

But better people than I have tried, and many of them still haven’t given up.

Today’s guest is one of those people—Irwin Elman, the former Ontario Child Advocate, who staunchly believes we can develop a society that treats children’s mental health as a priority instead of as an afterthought.

And what this conversation went to show me is how much I’ve yet to learn about children’s mental health. From his expertise and experiences, Mr. Elman got me to reframe how I thought about the issue at hand and redouble my efforts to provide the best environment for my children’s mental health!

Courtesy of Children’s Mental Health Ontario, it’s another Children’s Mental Health Week special! I hope you enjoy it!

Thanks for listening, and until the next episode, I hope you keep working to make a future we can be proud of! And don’t forget to join the #kidscantwait movement if you want to show your support — https://www.cmho.org/stay-informed!

Until the next,

–case p.

Children’s Mental Health Week 2019 — Day 1 — Why Does Children’s Mental Health MATTER?

Welcome to Children’s Mental Health Week 2019! I’ve partnered with Children’s Mental Health Ontario to spread the word not only about what they do but also why it’s so important that we’re all aware of issues surrounding children’s mental health!

As a Dad with three- and five-year-old children, I’ll admit that their mental health’s not always at the forefront of my mind. I think about things that contribute to it—giving them a safe environment to express themselves; being present and listening to them as much as possible; emphasising time and time again that it’s more important to be happy than successful by someone else’s standards—but I think there’s some time yet before it becomes part of our regular family conversation.

But I’m not so naïve that I don’t see how important it could become in our future.

Why Children’s Mental Health MATTERS.

Children—and the world they have around them—pretty much change in the blink of an eye. The kids we know today won’t be those kids forever, and the decisions we make today will shape the world they live in tomorrow. They need us to lead by example, make the right choices, and help build a world that sees their cries for help as a priority—not just a phase they’re going through.

And that’s why this Children’s Mental Health Week, we wanted to really drive the point home and explore the various aspects of children’s mental health and why it’s so important to start caring about it now, not when it becomes a problem.

Chatting with Casey 0017 — Playing with People’s Attention

Whenever I worry I’m giving my boys a little too much screen time, I remember growing up on a generous diet of cartoons, comic books and video games—and I think everything turned out fine.

It Feels Like a Lifetime Ago….

You see, way back when, I was the archetype of what you’d call a nerd—oversized glasses on my face and curled up with a good book in most social settings—and at a time long before the things that made me a nerd were ever cool.

Piles of comic books before their movies became the force they are today. Video game fan clubs before we had reddit to bring us together. But all these things were fundamental parts of my life for many years to come, especially as I drew comics of my own well into my twenties.

Though life took me down a different path than I expected (you can thank my Dad’s sage advice to get a job that pays the bills, as painful a pill it was to swallow at the time), I understand what it’s like to put your all into your creation, trying to create something truly reflecting your vision.

Chatting with Casey 0016 — Of Flour, Fables and Fleeing to the North

Working on this week’s episode—where I interview Christine Tremoulet, a story strategist—made me realise how much my storytelling’s changed of late.

Chatting with Casey 0016 — Of Flour, Fables and Fleeing to the North — Blogging Brilliantly for Your Business

If you’ve been around a while, you’ll be all too familiar with the ongoing struggle I’ve had with the never-ending piles of ideas I have on paper. And I wasn’t winning—a glance at the stacks on my dining room table would tell you that—but all the hustle at least felt like progress. I mean, I got a couple of solid blog posts out each week, and with the tweets, tons of Facebook discussion and the odd Insta post, why should I think any different?

But then you have the 220 draft posts on my site. Another 300 or so sheets of paper with all my ideas. And who could forget, of course, the 200-item to-do list that never stopped haunting me? It became quickly evident that while I thought I was conquering my demons, at the rate I was going, my kids would have kids of their own before I got it all done.

Something had to give, and with the podcast, I think I finally found it.

Chatting with Casey 0015 — I’m Where I Need to be Right Now

‘Tis the season for holiday parties, holiday traffic, and a whole gaggle of germs with cold and flu season upon us… just in time for the holidays.

Chatting with Casey 0015 — I'm Where I Need to be Right Now — Christmas — Must Buy All The Things

With our youngest hit by a pretty nasty cough over the weekend, productivity ground to a halt. You can easily take for granted how much you’re doing until something more important comes along and forces you to reprioritise. I learned over time to feel the pressure a little less and accept that my family doesn’t need me to be the best creator in the game—they need me to be present.

And so as I lay down in the bottom bunk of my sons’ bed with a kid who woke up for maybe the twelfth time that night, I put all thoughts of podcasting aside and took care of home as Dave Hollister aptly put it back in 2000.

But now that he’s up and running again, so am I, and it’s time to continue our storytelling journey with Chatting with Casey, Episode 15—I’m Where I Need to be Right Now.

Chatting with Casey 0014 — I Don’t Want to Talk to Anyone; Just Give Me the Puzzles!

If there’s one thing podcasting teaches you, it’s flexibility.

My conversation with Errol dates a few weeks back when I had to reschedule my recording with Richard Badra and went to Facebook in search of volunteers. And so, dozens of friends later, I remembered a conversation I had with Errol one Sunday and soon found myself driving the four minutes to his place to record a podcast about escape rooms, anime, and the utter joy that’s nerd culture in general.

As you’ll discover in the episode, I meant to put it out in mid-November, but I had to push it back. Richard had his #RebelGiving Twitter Party on the 20th. Rob Tinkler’s 8 Tiny Reindeer was out December 1st, so a release on the 3rd would be too late. It quickly became clear to me that I needed to be more flexible with my recordings and not say things to tie myself down to a specific time in the process.

So, to Errol, I do apologise, but what’s important is that we’re here, and Episode 14’s finally out to the world so everyone else can enjoy a conversation I found hilarious.

Chatting with Casey 14 Featuring Errol Elumir — Because Nerds Must Stand United!

Though it wasn’t all that cool when I was growing up, nerd culture’s come into its own this past decade, glamorising things we enjoyed in smaller social circles away from society’s judgmental eyes. Board games. Comics. Japanese anime and American cartoons. So much of it defined who I am today, but I dabbled in it less over time, becoming the adult society wanted me to be—or at least, that’s what I thought I needed to do.

But men like Errol give me hope that the world’s finally changing. That men can be into nerdy things and still respected as the cool Dads they are. I laughed harder in this podcast than I had in a long time, and I think you will too when you hear some of his stories!

So settle in, relax, and make sure you’ve already visited the loo—this one will hit you right in the funny bone, and you’ve got to get yourself ready.

Chatting with Casey 0013 — It Takes Two to Tango in Friendship

It’s always nice to take a break from our lives and spend a little time on vacation, but when you own your own business, you need to plan for that.

Eight Tiny Reindeer, Two Great Friends, One Awesome Episode!

One thing 2018’s taught me is that I need to get ahead of my schedule if I ever want to spend any time apart from it.

Chatting With Casey 0013 — It Takes Two to Tango in Friendship — Rob, Casey and Carlos

The last third of this year’s had me hustle to get everything off my plate, knowing that as soon as the holidays finish, I have substantial obstacles ahead. So I’ve been working days, weeks and even months ahead to create my best content to avoid ever being backed into a corner again.

And this podcast episode’s no exception.

Recorded on November 15, 2018, after plenty of texts back and forth between Carlos Diaz and myself, Chatting with Casey episode 13 started up with a misbehaving SD card, quick sprints to Shoppers and Rexall, and the hope that one day I get myself a studio so I can do these conversations justice.

But regardless, it was a great convo between Carlos Diaz, Rob Tinkler and myself, and I hope you’ll be ready when 8 Tiny Reindeer debuts this Saturday—may you enjoy listening to it as much as these guys did making it!

But for now, you can hear all about it on the podcast!

Chatting with Casey 0012 — In a Nutshell, What Craft Chocolate’s All About!

As an entrepreneur, people will often tell you that you can’t do something, and you need to do whatever’s in your power to prove them wrong.

While we didn’t cover the naysayers in his life, I’m sure Richard Badra can relate—leaving the stable world of accounting for the scrappy world of craft chocolate, I’m sure there were more than a few people who thought he lost his marbles.

But if you ask me, passion always wins out.

Chatting with Casey 0012 — In a Nutshell, What Craft Chocolate's All About! — Richard Badra at Work
Photo courtesy of Anna Epp Photography

When I met Richard at the Blissdom conference, I instantly understood that he stood behind Rebel Chocolates. I decided early on that I had to have him on the podcast, but I didn’t want to do some filler episode about chocolate.

But there’s a lot going on that so many of us never even think about, like the allegations of modern slavery in West Africa linked to 95% of the world’s chocolate production. Or that Canada’s making chocolate that competes on an international level, with brands like Hummingbird and Sirene taking awards from European companies who’ve been at this for hundreds of years. Richard wants you to learn about one of Canada’s best-kept secrets, and on Chatting with Casey’s thirteenth episode, he’s here to tell you all about it.

So sit back, grab your favourite snack, and get ready to learn a ton—there’s a lot to be said in this episode; I hope you all enjoy it!

Happy listening, and if you like what you heard, do make sure to like, rate, share and subscribe. In all honesty, it’s people like you who keep this show going, so make sure to show your support so I know I’m not just speaking to myself! ?

Thanks for stopping by, and until the next, I remain,

–case p.

Chatting with Casey 0011 — Don’t be Afraid of the Doula!

One day, I’ll be able to get a full night’s sleep without feeling like I’m leaving hours on the table because I haven’t written.

Chatting with Casey 0011 — Don't be Afraid of the Doula! — Rhiannon Langford Sitting in the Kitchen

“Don’t be Afraid of the Doula” marks the last of the interviews I did in the summer before life got all wonky and I took an unexpected hiatus. After getting my groove back in October, I’ve spent a lot of time working to make sure it doesn’t happen again, scheduling multiple interviews where I can to get ahead so I’m just not scrambling anymore.

But I’m enjoying the ride. Chatting with Casey’s allowing me to cover the stories I wouldn’t normally  speak to on my own, like what it’s like to grow up gay in Toronto, or why I may have been a little too cavalier in declaring Father’s Day as just for Dads. “Don’t be Afraid of the Doula” is no exception, where I speak with Rhiannon Langford about her business Birth Boss Maternity Care.