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Are you concerned about your drinking or your loved one’s drinking and wonder if you have a drinking problem? You wonder if you can get it under control or whether you even want to. You’re worried about what people might think.

Many people like you have their questions answered and learn how to stop drinking with the help of the experienced, patient, and non-judgmental counselors at Canvas Health.

concerned about alcohol use - substance abuse assessments

Substance Abuse Assessments

For more than 50 years, Canvas Health has provided a wide range of substance abuse assessments to people in our Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota metro communities. Our goal is to help clients understand the possible presence and extent of their issue, and assist them in designing a plan to address their specific circumstance.

We specialize in substance abuse assessments, as well as alcohol treatment for all ages, in addition to other addiction treatments and drug treatments. We also are able to do court-ordered drug or alcohol assessments.

If you’d like to have your questions answered and your concerns about your alcohol use or drug use addressed, Canvas Health’s experienced, patient, and non-judgmental counselor are ready to help. Schedule a substance abuse assessment via our website by calling us at (651) 777-5222.

Concerned about alcohol use? Canvas Health can help

Are you concerned about your drinking or your loved one’s drinking and wonder if you have a drinking problem? You wonder if you can get it under control or…

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Holiday blues. Holiday sadness. Holiday depression. Feelings like this can be confusing during what we think are supposed to be happy times. But they may not feel that way for you and other people.

dog wrapped in christmas lights - holiday depression

In addition to sadness, the holidays often create painful memories, loneliness, and anxiety for people as they try to make the holidays live up to impossible expectations. The necessary measures to combat the COVID-19 coronavirus during this pandemic and the fear of infection are making this year even more difficult.

But what you need to know is that there are other people struggling like you and that there are great ways to cope.

Be Honest About How You’re Feeling

Be honest about how you’re feeling this holiday season, with yourself and others, even if those feelings of sadness, depression, or anxiety seem at odds with how the holidays are “supposed to be.”

  • Can you identify what the causes of these feelings are?
  • Are you tired or exhausted?
  • Are you or someone you love struggling financially?
  • Are you missing your family?
  • Are you disappointed these holidays won’t be like others?
  • Are you feeling lonely or isolated?
  • Are you feeling stress to get everything done, to “pull off” these holidays?
  • Are you able to see family, but do they bring their own baggage?
  • Are you worried about letting people down?
  • Does the end of the year make you feel like you haven’t accomplished enough in 2020?
  • Do you miss loved ones you’ve lost?

When to Reach Out to a Counselor

If any of these describe how you are feeling, there are things you can try at home explored below. If they seem difficult or you worry it could be worse, please call our intake coordinators at Canvas Health, who would love to talk with you via video appointment. Message or call us here.

Before talking to a counselor, things to remember or try include:

  • Avoid excessive alcohol. It’s a depressant and in excess will make you feel worse.
  • Reach out to friends, family, or colleagues. Even if only for a phone call or video chat. Be honest.
  • Move. Do your regular exercise routine or start taking daily walks. Bring along a podcast, book on tape, or music if you’d like. Or call a friend and walk and talk together.
  • Acknowledge that there is no perfect and that you can say no, to family or your own expectations.
  • Think about what you do have and what you can look forward to.

Sometimes these coping strategies may feel like they’re not enough or that your struggles with sadness or anxiety are too much. In that case, reach out to Canvas Health so you can set up a telehealth appointment with one of our counselors. We help a lot of clients every day who feel just like you. Asking for help takes two minutes right here.

It’s the Holiday Season! Why do I feel so bad?

Holiday blues. Holiday sadness. Holiday depression. Feelings like this can be confusing during what we think are supposed to be happy times.

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This year has been unlike any other – our mental and physical strength have been tested again and again by the pandemic, political and civil unrest, and the overall upending of our daily lives.

We are full of hope as we reflect on the resilience of our Canvas Health community. Our clinicians adapted in flexible and creative ways we never would have dreamed of just a year ago. Our clients continued the hard work of healing in a more uncertain world. And you, our supporters, have been a generous light when times were at their darkest.

As we begin to emerge from the pandemic over the coming months, we believe that the need for mental health and substance use care will continue to increase. We feel honored to be in a place to be able to provide this essential care – and we can’t do it without the help of our generous supporters.

Please consider a tax-deductible gift to Canvas Health today.

looking toward 2021

Canvas Health looks toward 2021 with hope, commitment to clients

This year has been unlike any other. We are full of hope as we reflect on the resilience of our Canvas Health community. Check out our video recap of 2020!

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Canvas Health recently welcomed Dr. Oyebode Taiwo to the Canvas Health Board of Directors in November 2020. He is responsible for the development of 3M’s global health strategy, as well as the leadership and management of the medical organization.

Meet Dr. Taiwo

Dr. Taiwo serves on the board of directors of American Cancer Society (ACS) and Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement (ICSI).

Prior to joining 3M, Dr. Taiwo was Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of the Occupational & Environmental Medicine Fellowship Training Program at Yale University School of Medicine. He also served as Corporate Medical Advisor to Alcoa Inc. in a unique academic/private partnership for 17 years.

Dr. Taiwo received his medical degree from College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Nigeria and a master’s degree in public health from the University of Alabama, He completed residency training in Internal Medicine at Meharry Medical College, Nashville, Tennessee and fellowship training in Occupational & Environmental Medicine at Yale University School of Medicine.

Bode is married with 3 daughters. He enjoys traveling and playing electric bass guitar.

Dr. Oyebode Taiwo - Canvas Health Board of Directors

 

Canvas Health welcomes Dr. Oyebode Taiwo to its Board of Directors

Canvas Health recently welcomed Dr. Oyebode Taiwo to the Canvas Health Board of Directors in November 2020. He is responsible for the development of…

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When Canvas Health began moving clinicians home as a safety precaution, Anoka County Mobile Crisis Practitioner Kylie Otte knew it would be challenging to try to find somewhere that would be conducive to working for her, and that would feel calming for her clients when they called in with a crisis.

canvas health employee - mental health crisis lines

“I chose the laundry room because I have roommates and no one WANTS to come into the laundry room unless they HAVE to, so I was able to have a private, quiet place to focus.”

Kylie set up a desk and chair, hung a pretty background, and was ready to see clients virtually, offering assessments, interventions, and stabilization services as well as safety planning and short-term therapeutic services to assist in recovery from a crisis.

Mobile Crisis Response Team

Kylie and her colleagues work very hard to help people who are experiencing behavioral, emotional or psychiatric situations needing a timely intervention to reduce the possibility of physical harm.

Canvas Health operates mental health crisis services lines for seven counties across the metro.

To reach these mobile crisis services 24/7:

  • Anoka County Mobile Crisis Response: Call (763) 755-3801
  • Scott County Mobile Crisis Response: Call (952) 818-3702
  • East Central Crisis Response: Call 1-800-523-3333
    • Serving residents of Chisago, Isanti, Pine, Kanabec and Mille Lacs counties

All counties in Minnesota have mobile crisis phone lines. To find your local crisis number, click here.

Canvas Health Clinicians Create Calm In-Home Offices

After moving clinicians home, Mobile Crisis Practitioner Kylie Otte knew it would be challenging to find somewhere that would feel calming for her clients when they called in.

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Canvas Health’s clinicians are providing therapy to individuals of all ages to help with the effects of isolation, increased anxiety and depression, trauma, and other struggles associated with the COVID-19 lockdowns. Canvas Health’s substance abuse counselors are helping adolescents and adults overcome and manage alcoholism, addictions, drug use, and other substance use issues. Individuals can make appointments to see therapists and substance use counselors via telehealth.

2020 calendar - covid resources - substance abuse treatment

Mobile Crisis Response

In immediate mental health crises, Canvas Health’s mobile crisis response teams respond with assessment, intervention and stabilization services provided primarily via telehealth, and in-person if necessary.

Mobile crisis response staff will also provide necessary safety planning and short-term therapeutic services to assist in recovery from a crisis.

  • Anoka County 24/7 Mobile Crisis Response: (763) 755-3801
  • Scott County 24/7 Mobile Crisis Response: (952) 818-3702
  • East Central 24/7 Mobile Crisis Response: 1-800-523-3333
    • Serving Chisago, Isanti, Pine, Kanabec and Mille Lacs Residents

Mobile crisis response phone numbers for all Tribal Nations and Minnesota Counties.

Community Resources

Canvas Health encourages Twin Cities residents to reach out to these community resources for assistance with food insecurity, benefit supports, COVID talking strategies for kids, and stress and anxiety coping mechanisms.

For a downloadable list of these resources, click here.

Canvas Health offers compassionate therapy and substance abuse treatment during COVID

Canvas Health’s clinicians are providing therapy to individuals of all ages to help with the effects of struggles associated with the COVID-19 lockdowns.

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It may start with pie—apple, peach, pumpkin—but it doesn’t end there. Canvas Health’s Prevention, Intervention, and Education (PIE) program at some Washington County schools uses day-time treats to give kids an excuse to try it out in the in-school intervention, but they stay for the relationships and the safe space.

pie - substance use program - substance abuse

Educating Adolescents About Substance Use and Addiction

Championed by substance use division manager, Cathy Harvieux, and led by adolescent counselors like Michael Mader, PIE classes are 1.5 hour sessions in schools that cover a range of topics dealing with substance use and addiction. During that time each week, adolescent are led through a curriculum based on:

  • P – Prevention – making choices, alternate actions to use, support systems, relapse prevention, emotion regulation, thinking reports;
  • I – Intervention – Group resources;
  • E – Education – drugs, addiction in family, cycle of change, health, effect of the brain, emotions, triggers and cravings.

The classes are meant to educate adolescents about substance use and addiction, like vaping, but also how to recognize their choices and agency to shape the outcomes of their life. Adolescents in PIE often come to the class because their own substance use or the substance use of their family members has weighed on them.

PIE Focuses on Building Relationships

PIE aims to succeed where other primary prevention programs, like DARE, fail by focusing on the building relationships between Canvas Health counselors and adolescents and between the adolescents attending PIE classes. It is through that trust and belonging in a positive environment that we believe enables adolescents to not only believe in themselves, but also in their power to identify when they need help and have trusted adults in their lives who can.

Work this like this is made possible by positive relationships with area schools who trust Canvas Health to step in and seize opportunities to help students who otherwise would have needs go unmet.

It may start with pie, but that’s only just the beginning.

Learn more about Canvas Health’s substance use / chemical health programs for adolescents.

If you are concerned about a loved one’s drinking or drug use, contact Canvas Health for a chemical health assessment at (651) 777-5222.

Chemical Health Program for Adolescents Has Sweet Twist

Canvas Health’s Prevention, Intervention, and Education (PIE) program at some Washington County schools, covers a range of topics dealing with substance use and addiction.

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Cathleen Harvieux, Canvas Health’s substance use manager, recently spoke with The Phoenix Spirit Recovery Newspaper about the ways in which Canvas Health has adapted during the pandemic to helping people who struggle with addiction. In the article, Harvieux explained how Canvas Health transitioned quickly to the virtual treatment model and has worked very hard to make treatment accessible for everyone. Canvas Health is currently offering telehealth options for adults, adolescents, and families concerned about drug and alcohol use.

woman wearing mask - substance use treatment

Canvas Health also is offering treatment in its jail programs in Chisago County and Washington County. Jail patients meet with the provider in a group setting while wearing masks. Canvas Health also provides laptop rental to clients who need one in order to participate in virtual meetings. If an inmate has to be quarantined after leaving the jail for, say, a court appearance, the inmate is provided with an iPad so they can join the Zoom meeting during the quarantine period.

Socially Distant Sober Support Systems

All members of Canvas Health’s chemical health staff are licensed alcohol and drug counselors, and are available to evaluate and help manage substance use problems via telehealth, and using social distancing in some cases. Canvas Health’s caring licensed alcohol and drug counselors, chemical health assessors, and psychotherapists, work together to get clients and families the help they need. Staff performs Rule 25 assessments, a type of assessment mandated by the state of Minnesota, and use them to develop care management plans for adults, adolescents, and their families. Our staff also worked with clients who have co-occurring disorders in which a person is struggling with mental health and substance use issues.

In the The Phoenix Spirit article, Harvieux acknowledged the challenges of building a sober support system during the pandemic. She said her staff encourages clients to get together using social distancing to support one another. Canvas Health also has a peer recovery support specialist on its team who contacts individuals to meet them at socially distant 12-Step meetings with their families, helping them to build that sober community support as well.

Learn more about Canvas Health’s substance use program and make an appointment for a chemical health assessment or chemical health treatment.

To read the full Phoenix Spirit article click here.

Telehealth Addiction Treatment Expands During Pandemic

Cathleen Harvieux recently spoke with The Phoenix Spirit about the ways in which Canvas Health has adapted during the pandemic to helping people who struggle with addiction.

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Canvas Health’s Psychological Services program provides comprehensive or targeted psychological evaluation and consultation. These evaluations may assist diagnostic decision making, treatment planning, risk assessment, placement, employment, or court dispositions.

question marks - Psychological Evaluations Q&A

What is a Psychological Evaluation?

Psychological Evaluations provide an in-depth understanding of an individual’s mental health status and provide diagnostic clarification and treatment recommendations, using psychological tests and extensive review of collateral information. Psychological Evaluations can focus on cognitive functioning, neurocognitive development, or risk assessment for problematic behaviors.

When do I need a Psychological Evaluation?

A psychological evaluation is usually completed when a specific diagnostic question needs to be answered and a routine mental health assessment is not able to address the concern. Psychological Evaluations are often based on a referral made by the examinee’s Primary Care Physician, Psychiatrist or Psychotherapist.

How long does a Psychological Evaluation take?

Depending on the testing that is to be completed, a Psychological Evaluation can take 2 to 8 hours.

What do I need to bring to a Psychological Evaluation?

Any past mental health assessments, current medication information, School-based IEP assessments and plans.

What kinds of questions are given in a Psychological Evaluation?

Clinical history, social and family history, review of mental health symptom presentation.

Does insurance cover Psychological Evaluation?

Yes, with the extent of the coverage varied depending on the insurance plan.

How do I make a referral or appointment for a Psychological Evaluation?

Referrals are accepted from contracting court and social services programs and from other community health care providers, as well as from Canvas Health clinical staff. Please download and fax a request for assessment to the Psychological Services Support Specialist, at (651) 251-5059 with referral or appointment questions.

Psychological Evaluations: Questions and Answers

Canvas Health’s Psychological Services program provides comprehensive or targeted psychological evaluation and consultation.

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It was the conversation I was dreading and had been rehearsing for days. “Mom, I can’t wait to play Pokemon with my friend at recess.” What he didn’t yet know was that his friend was assigned to a different hybrid learning schedule from him. When I had to break the news to him, he was understandably crushed, and I was too. Lots of tears ensued and more questions were asked. I know we are not alone in these tough conversations as we face an unprecedented school year ahead. When parenting feels overwhelming, sometimes it’s helpful to go back to the basics. Here are some tips:

school hallway - back to school pandemic tips

Name those big feelings

Dr. Dan Siegel termed the phrase “Name it to tame it” in one of his bestselling books, “The Whole Brain Child”. This is a term that has stuck with me throughout all of the parenting challenges myself and my clients have faced. When our children are having meltdowns and big emotions, the best thing we can do is to name their feelings and validate that they are real for them. We don’t have to be the problem-fixers (as much as we wish we could be), which takes a big load off our shoulders. By simply stating, “I hear you, I know this is hard/scary/frustrating, ” while offering comfort and staying present with our children, we will help them to calm and they will be more receptive to moving forward. Some children have difficulty naming their feelings and may instead act out their feelings through arguments, aggression, tantrums, defiance, and other challenging behaviors. In those instances if we can name what we think they may be feeling, it helps them to learn the skill to later name it on their own. Phrases such as “I’m wondering if this is really about being scared to go back to school rather than you not finding your favorite pair of socks?”. Sometimes they will correct us, and sometimes the light bulb will go off and they will reach their “aha moment”. Staying with them, being present, and naming the emotions will go far in taming the challenging moments.

Create a predictable routine

Does the end of the Summer break have you feeling like you’re going a little nutty? Children often feel that way too. We thrive on a healthy dose of routines, predictability, and schedules; when we know what to expect and there are few surprises, our minds and bodies feel more relaxed. Whether your child is doing distance learning, in-school learning, or a combination, helping to create a routine will feel better for everyone. Plan for a consistent bed time, wake up time, and meal/snack times. Determine what works best for the morning hours and afternoon hours, and have a designated area as free from distractions as possible. Children often thrive on a calendar and visual schedule that they can see, along with timers; make it a fun family project by having them help create and decorate their daily schedule (and bonus, it help you get their buy-in!). Scheduling in routine breaks throughout the day will be important for both you and your child to handle the stress that comes your way.

Monitor electronic time

Do you notice your child reaching for their phone throughout their work time? We all get distracted easily from time to time and children have even more difficulty in managing those impulses. Establishing expectations and consequences from the beginning around screen time and cell phone use will eventually help to decrease limit-testing and decreased motivation as a result of distractions.

Reward positive behavior

Speaking of electronic time, use it to your advantage! If your child is motivated by screen time, you can use it as a reward for completing a task and other positive behaviors. By making clear guidelines such as “if you can show me you’re working hard for the next 20 minutes, you can have 10 minutes of screen time when the timer goes off”. Other children may be more motivated by games, stickers, or free play, and that is great too.

Ask for help

We were not meant to go on this road alone. Parenting a child is hard, even more so when our worlds’ have been turned upside down with this pandemic. Be kind to yourself, and allow yourself the grace to make mistakes. Gather your tribe of supports, whether that be family, neighbors, friends, or school staff. If you have concerns that your child is struggling with the adjustment of a new school year, do not be afraid to ask for help. The earlier we can help support a family or child that is struggling, the easier it often is to get them feeling better.

-Mindy Johnson, LICSW,  Canvas Health School-based Mental Health Therapist 

If you are looking for additional help for your child, family, or for yourself, please contact Canvas Health to make an appointment at (651) 777-5222.

Therapist shares parent tips for helping kids go back to school during the pandemic

When parenting feels overwhelming, sometimes it’s helpful to go back to the basics: Name those big feelings, create a predictable routine.

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Is someone in your life drinking too much? Are you concerned about drug use with someone you care about? Are you worried about your personal drug or alcohol use?

inspirational quote it won't be easy but it'll be worth it - chemical health assessments

Substance Abuse Behaviors

Substance abuse behaviors to look for include:

  • Drinking and driving / DUI, DWI
  • Increased use of alcohol or drugs
  • Becoming secretive or withdrawn about drinking and drug use
  • Struggling with day-to-day activities at home and/or work
  • Spending more time with friends who drink or use drugs than with family members
  • Having money problems
  • Borrowing  money or running up charges on credit cards,
  • Committing an alcohol or drug-related crime or crimes.

Canvas Health’s experienced staff are open for chemical health assessments via telehealth on your schedule. We handle all types of referrals, including court-ordered substance abuse assessments in Minnesota. If you don’t have insurance to cover your substance abuse assessment or substance abuse treatment, we can help with that as well.

Call us at (651) 777-5222 or request a substance abuse assessment.

Chemical Health Assessments in Minnesota Available Now

Is someone in your life drinking too much? Are you concerned about drug use with someone you care about? Are you worried about your personal drug or alcohol use?

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Canvas Health’s staff is grieving the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Our city’s cries of pain, particularly from communities of color and Native peoples, have risen louder throughout this past week, demanding that we listen and examine how we can do better as an agency, as clinicians, and as humans.

i can't breathe
Photo credit: Scott Streble

As a community mental health agency, we are deeply committed to helping people attend to the wounds of anxiety, depression, grief, and trauma. We see in the wake of George Floyd’s death, as we have before, that grief and trauma are often inflicted through great social and racial inequities. That must change.

Canvas Health works to honor each individual’s life experience. But we must do better. We must do better as we work against systemic racism. We will act within our mission of hope, healing, and recovery – for every individual.

Canvas Health grieves the murder of George Floyd

Canvas Health’s staff is grieving the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Our city’s cries of pain, particularly from communities of color and Native peoples, have risen louder.

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Ryan, a Canvas Health Telehealth Client, tells his story of how he feels grateful to do his therapy via telehealth:

man on typing on computer - therapy telehealth

I am certainly appreciative of the opportunity to employ telehealth video visits during this time of the COVID-19 crisis.

Without that opportunity, I would not easily be able to reach out to my therapist to keep my weekly visits going forward. I have some underlying health issues that have prevented me from being able to go directly to the mental health clinic during the pandemic and undoubtedly, this would have halted my chance to meet and talk with my therapist completely. The telehealth application has allowed a seamless transition to being able to do my weekly check-ins and talk therapy from the comfort of my home during this crucial time of crisis. Without it, my mental health needs would have been left in a not so positive state. I am still able to maintain an acceptable level of confidentiality and privacy with using the app as well and it has worked great over the past 3 weeks now. It is so easy I may continue to employ it even after the crisis is eased as life allows. Thank you for allowing patient clients to use this medium for a very viable option to live face-to-face visits.

Learn more about Canvas Health’s mental health and substance use telehealth appointments.

Continuing Care During COVID-19: Client grateful for telehealth

Ryan, a Canvas Health client, tells his story of how he feels grateful to do his therapy via telehealth.

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I wasn’t living in a positive state of mind when I began my substance use treatment at Canvas Health. However, about two hours into my first group I decided to change my thought and embrace the group and be as open as I could be. From then on I started to get to know the group, get to know the staff at Canvas Health, and truly begin my outpatient treatment as an individual who wanted to gain the knowledge and tools to take ownership back into my life.

person reading - Canvas Health Substance Use

My Biggest Lesson in Substance Abuse Treatment

Bob Jones has been a great counselor and was always very helpful, honest, and allowed my different views on some of the curriculum to be heard. I never felt that I was being pushed or forced to think the way Bob did. Instead, I felt that I was always the boss of what I was going to get out of my treatment, and went every week to my group to learn and help others see that a sober life can still be fun and worth living for. I know for a fact that my biggest lesson I have gotten out of treatment has been to love myself and have confidence in all areas of my life, something I had never done before.

From the front desk staff, Lindsay, Bob, and to all the other counselors I have met along the way I can say without a doubt in my mind that they truly care for each and every one who walks through those doors. I would highly recommend Canvas as a place to seek help if needed, or assistance in their journey to recovery. –Canvas Health Client

If you or someone you care about is struggling with drugs or alcohol, learn about Canvas Health’s substance abuse treatment (available by telehealth) here, or by calling (651) 777-5222.

“I took back ownership of my life.” – A Canvas Health Substance Use Client Shares Their Story

I wasn’t living in a positive state of mind when I began my substance use treatment at Canvas Health. However, about two hours into my first group I decided to change my thought and embrace the group and be as open as I could be. From then on I started to get to know the […]

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Canvas Heath’s Early Childhood Assistance Program (ECBA) has immediate openings for children ages 0-5.

boy on playground - early childhood mental health services

If your toddler or preschooler is struggling with behaviors like increased tantrums, regression in development, difficulty sleeping, increased anxiety, and/or frequent biting or hitting, we can help.

“A young child’s response to the COVID-19 environment and a change in routine may manifest in different ways than an older child or adult, but that doesn’t make them any less concerning or serious,” said Katherine Zacharias, ECBA supervisor. “Early childhood mental health services can help address these behaviors through work directly with children and parents.”

ECBA Assessments & Treatments

  • General Mental Health Assessments, Neuropsychological Evaluations, Psychiatric Evaluations
  • Play Therapy, Individual Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Parent/Child Psychotherapy, Family Therapy
  • Staff are trained in evidence-based interventions that include: Parent Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT), Trauma Informed-Child Parent Psychotherapy (TI-CPP), Trauma Focused CBT

Who is Eligible

  • Children five and under who experience attachment, social, emotional and behavioral challenges at home, at daycare, or in other settings.
  • These early childhood services are available throughout the Twin Cities metro area.

To have a conversation about your concerns, or to make an appointment, call Chantel Gramenz at (651) 251-5191

Immediate Openings: Mental Health For Ages 0-5

Canvas Heath’s Early Childhood Assistance Program (ECBA) has immediate openings for children ages 0-5. If your toddler or preschooler is struggling with behaviors like increased tantrums, regression in development, difficulty sleeping, increased anxiety, and/or frequent biting or hitting, we can help. “A young child’s response to the COVID-19 environment and a change in routine may […]

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