March 2018 – Timsle Inc.

March 2018 – Timsle Inc.

A few years ago, second-year university student Quayce Thomas found himself confused, unhealthy, and spiraling into depression and substance abuse. He was soon diagnosed with bipolar disorder following an episode of acute psychosis. Quayce was able to tackle the challenges of the condition with the help of a well-resourced and knowledgeable support network, learning together about the importance of good health, developing good routines, and being well. Quayce’s case is not unique; between the ages of 18-24, students have a heightened risk of developing a mental health condition.

Quayce’s own experience has fueled his drive to continue to learn more about mental health and the potential that cultivating a healthy lifestyle holds. Enter Timsle, the social health platform he co-founded, which combines an investment model and a social accountability network to focus on helping people build healthier, more active lifestyles and make small positive changes to their routines. The innovative online platform allows friends and family to choose categories through which they can support their loved one living with a mental health disorder. Timsle takes the focus off the struggle and frames it as a challenge for health improvement between those living with mental illness and those who care about their success.

To celebrate Quayce and learn more about Timsle, join us at JustDrinks on Tuesday, March 13, 6:30pm-8pm at Pressed Cafe on Gladstone.

January 2018 – Algonquin Aki Media Project

The Algonquin Aki Media Project aims to support the creation of media by and/or for Algonquin people [*Aki is the Algonquin/Anishinaabemowin word for land or territory]. The main focus of this project will be to raise money in order to financially support individual proposals for written or multimedia stories, and also connect successful applicants with mentorship – from Algonquin people with cultural knowledge and connections, and/or from media makers (Algonquin or otherwise) with know-how and skill-based expertise.

This project’s mission is to support the representation of Algonquin people and issues in the media, and to build community and connections around that. This includes supporting Algonquin media makers, educating and engaging non-Algonquin media makers, and providing opportunities in and beyond the media to center Algonquin interests within the traditional, unceded territory of the Algonquin (‘eastern Ontario’ and ‘western Quebec’). The media this project can facilitate will nourish greater overall comprehension of – and action on – what is important to Algonquin individuals and communities and the Algonquin Nation as a whole.

Come learn more about this fascinating and important project at the next JustDrinks on Wednesday, January 17, 6pm – 8pm at Impact Hub Ottawa

October 2017 – Foodsharing Ottawa

October 2017 – Foodsharing Ottawa

Canadians waste a staggering $31 billion of food each year, and it’s estimated that less than two thirds of the food that is produced worldwide is actually consumed. Waste can occur at every stage of the production process before the food gets to our table. Foodsharing Ottawa equates the lost water from food waste in North America to leaving the tap running and pouring 40 trillion litres of water down the drain.

Equally unsettling is the fact that more than half of food waste occurs after it’s purchased by us. While many regions throughout Canada and the world struggle with food insecurity, vast amounts of perfectly edible, nutritious and healthy food still end up in Canadian landfills. The financial and environmental implications of food waste are hefty, with taxpayers spending nearly $5 million a year disposing of non-composted food waste.

Foodsharing Ottawa, JustChange’s most recent grantwinner, is a grassroots, volunteer-based organization working to combat food waste and counteract its negative effects on communities and the environment. With a mission to empower people to be the change they want to see in the world by letting them participate in rescuing and sharing food, Foodsharing Ottawa has undertaken an ambitious new project to bring a community fridge to an Ottawa neighbourhood. A prime example of foodsharing, the community fridge would bring attention to the issue of food waste, help those who need the food and create a sense of community around the local area.

Join us in celebrating Foodsharing Ottawa at JustDrinks on Tuesday, November 7, 6pm-8pm at the Atomic Rooster. Let us know you’re coming!

August 2017 –  Butterfly Box

August 2017 – Butterfly Box

It is estimated that 1 in 4 women will experience a miscarriage or pregnancy loss in their lives. Although it is so prevalent, it’s not often talked about, leaving many families to experience their grief in isolation. The stigma surrounding pregnancy and infant loss is profound and an additional source of pain during an already devastating time. While support exists, programs are often relatively unknown and can be hard to access. And medical treatment during miscarriage and stillbirth tend to focus on physical rather than emotional treatment.

JustChange’s recent grant winner, Butterfly Box, is a platform for growing awareness and busting the stigma and taboo around pregnancy and infant loss. Butterfly Boxes contain thoughtful items and information resources and are delivered to bereaved families to support them through their grief journey. The Butterfly Boxes also engage the community in dialogue. Handwritten sympathy cards included in the box help bereaved families know their community cares about them and their experiences. Recipients of the boxes are invited to share their experiences through a story card, which will then be displayed during October 2018, which is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Month.

Butterfly Box is a partnership between Mom Friends, an organization that creates postpartum care kits for women, and Aaron’s Butterfly Run, a volunteer-led group raising money and awareness for perinatal and infant loss in Ottawa. The JustChange grant will enable Mom Friends and Aaron’s Butterfly Run to develop the first series of Butterfly Boxes to help grieving Ottawa families.

Come and celebrate Butterfly Box at JustDrinks: Heart and Crown Byward Market on September 19, 7-9pm.


October 2016 — Trans Health Information Ottawa

October 2016 — Trans Health Information Ottawa

thio-logo“I don’t know much about trans health,” is a term that our next grantee hears all too often. Trans Health Information Ottawa (THIO) is working to eliminate that phrase from Ottawa’s healthcare vernacular. Completely unfunded, this group of dedicated people have been serving as a voice for the trans, Two Spirit and gender diverse communities in the Champlain region. Their focus is on navigating the healthcare system and raising awareness of healthcare issues faced by trans people.

The group at THIO has already managed impressive results: developing a solid online presence as a trusted source of information for trans patients in Ottawa, making substantial contributions to provincial level training curriculum, and advocating for 50% trans representation at all decision making tables related to trans healthcare in Ottawa. Despite this, they are completely unfunded, and have told us that options for funding for trans health initiatives are few and far between.

With the JustChange grant, THIO will continue to support those who provide user feedback on their health navigation tools and cover small operating costs. JustChange funding will allow THIO to complete their first few projects and demonstrate that the Ottawa community, both trans and their supporters, can do really big things together.

Come and celebrate our at JustDrinks: Grounded Kitchen on October 18, 6 – 8PM.