Five Ways to Get Help; One Door to Open – MESH

Five Ways to Get Help; One Door to Open – MESH

What can you do if you’re facing multiple problems, any one of which makes it difficult or impossible for you to address the others?

That’s the dilemma that five leading social agencies set out to address through an innovative service delivery model.

MESH was launched by five organizations: Aventa, Canadian Mental Health Association, Fresh Start Recovery Centre, Horizon Housing, and Prospect Human Services. MESH is an acronym. It stands for Mental health, Employment, Substance abuse, and Housing – the areas addressed by the program.

What makes MESH unique is the seamless way its partner agencies communicate and work together to provide extraordinary service to Calgarians with complex needs. MESH delivers greater assistance and reduces red tape. A person starting to address their homelessness can get concurrent help with addiction. A person battling a mental health issue can, at the same time, find assistance with employment.

MESH meets the needs of Calgary’s most vulnerable populations: people facing challenges in two or more of the four target areas. MESH’s vision is to reduce financial vulnerability while increasing the quality of life, independence, pride, dignity, and self-respect of the people it serves.

A crucial part of the process is provided by Peer Navigators. MESH Peer Navigators help participants work their way through the program. These vital volunteers have experienced one or more of the same challenges as the individuals they’re helping. By sharing their own experiences, the Peer Navigators create trusting relationships, free of judgment.

Another innovation is the specially-designed online software that can be used by all the agencies involved as well as the individual. Data entry is only required once and all partners are aware of the individual’s progress.


See the difference a coordinated approach can make in a person’s life.


More about MESH partners:

Aventa has been a respected leader in addiction treatment for women since 1971. We offer women with alcohol, drug, and/or gambling addictions the opportunity for a healthy life and a new direction through treatment, education and support.

Canadian Mental Health Association
CMHA is a national voluntary organization that promotes the mental health of all and supports the resilience and recovery of people experiencing mental illness. Each year, we provide direct service to more than 100,000 Canadians thanks to 10,000 volunteers and our staff across Canada.

Fresh Start Recovery Centre
Fresh Start is a residential alcohol and drug addiction treatment centre for men in Calgary. We base our program on the 12 steps and the Family Systems Method. We provide a comfortable environment where men and their families can escape addiction, and learn to live rewarding and fulfilling lives in recovery. Fresh Start has been helping people live in recovery since 1992.

Horizon Housing
Horizon Housing Society is a not-for-profit providing affordable homes to more than 700 individuals in Calgary. The Society serves individuals living with mental health challenges, physical disabilities, families and seniors living below the poverty line and the working poor.

Prospect Human Services is a not-for-profit employment agency that helps people who face barriers to employment find rewarding jobs and keep them. Prospect also works with employers, to help them understand the benefits of a diverse workforce and innovative ways to achieve it.



If you or someone you know would like to explore eligibility for the MESH program, please contact

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