In the last decade, mental health has been on the rise not only in B.C. but worldwide. According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, one in seven young people in B.C. will personally experience a mental illness at some point. Two B.C. parents are far too familiar with their child experiencing a mental illness. Coquitlam Mayor Richard Stewart has a daughter in her early 20’s who has experienced anxiety and depression. Maple Ridge mom Belinda Tober is the mother of Chelsey Tober; a 17-year-old girl who took her own life nearly three years ago. These parents shared their stories about the struggles of finding resources for their children in the Lower Mainland.
After Nicole Read moved to Maple Ridge with her family eight years ago, she immediately noticed flaws within not only Maple Ridge’s council system, but the city as a whole.
Read and her family live in a small neighbourhood in Maple Ridge called Silver Valley.
It’s not quite far enough out to be separated from the city, but not quite close enough to make them in a central location with a small commute time to and from work and school.
Growing from a mom in a small town complaining about the issues she saw on her Facebook page, Read has turned into a powerful figure in her community who has addressed issues that have been looked over for years.
A figure so powerful, that she has gained the trust of the community to an extent that she replaced Maple Ridge’s two-term mayor, Ernie Daykin, in this year’s election.