About ACCESS Open Minds

What is ACCESS Open Minds?

What is ACCESS Open Minds?


ACCESS Open Minds is a national research and evaluation network that marks a major Canadian innovation in youth mental health service design, delivery, evaluation, and research. Through transforming youth mental health services at 14 services sites in 6 provinces and 1 territory, and the implementation of a common research and evaluation program, ACCESS OM will generate new knowledge about youth mental health services in diverse contexts across Canada to ensure that Canadian youth receive the right care, at the right time, in the right place.

Why research and evaluation?

The purpose of research is to find answers for the unknown, and in this context to find out what works best for youth in need. There is a lot of evidence about the problems related to youth mental health, but very little is known about what approaches work best, especially for youth in Canada. The body of research generated by ACCESS OM will help to fill this gap in knowledge, and will ensure that Canadian youth – including those living in urban, rural, and Indigenous communities – truly receive the right care for them.


Download the ACCESS Open Minds Project Overview for a summary of the project, and scroll down to learn more about each of the project’s components.


Here’s another way to understand the project:

Service Delivery

The ACCESS Open Minds service delivery framework builds on existing youth mental health services to provide direct access to mental health assessments to youth seeking help. This framework includes staffing roles (such as clinicians, lay health workers, peer supporters), as well as service components (such as early identification activities and land-based programming) to engage youth, their families and carers, as well as community members in the delivery of youth mental health services.


Click here to learn more about Service Delivery within the ACCESS Open Minds project