This two semester Ontario College Graduate Certificate prepares front line service providers with the skills and qualifications to provide mental health support to infants, children, and their families. The combination of theoretical and practical course content provides students with the knowledge, skills, and judgment to contribute to positive mental health when working with infants, children, families, or in community settings.
The program is designed for front line service providers or recent graduates of programs such as, early childhood education, child and youth worker, health practitioners, community and social service workers, and recreational therapists working with infants, children, and families who wish to obtain a specialization in mental health to better support infants and their families. The program provides students with applied courses in infant and children's mental health, family dynamics, community mental health, therapeutic approaches, and crisis intervention in addition to exploring prevention, detection, and supportive programming for infants, children and their families. Students are also exposed to the practical applications of current research in the field of infant mental health and develop an understanding of risk and protective factors, and early intervention applications.
The early years have a unique and formative impact on development, relationships, functioning and overall health outcomes throughout life. The robust body of research and literature on early childhood development, including early mental health confirms that adversities such as: abuse, neglect, trauma can have a profound and devastating effect on brain development, emotional functioning and physical and mental health outcomes. The certificate in infant mental health will increase knowledge and skill for those wanting to work with vulnerable young children and their families. You will be prepared to work in settings such as child protection agencies, early intervention, children’s mental health, child welfare, infant development, family support, settlement programs.
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