The Multicultural Wellness Fair is a multi-agency initiative that aims to reach out to culturally diverse populations in Hamilton to provide education about mental health and free community resources. The idea for the multicultural wellness fair was born out of the Facilitating Mental Health and Addictions Action and Inclusion Project in 2012. This outreach project found that despite there being a large culturally diverse population in Hamilton, many do not access and/or are not aware of services available to them in the community. The project also found that there are a number of barriers, myths and stigma that contribute people not accessing needed supports.
The planning committee for the Multicultural Wellness Fair for 2017 consists of Good Shepherd, the Hamilton Centre for Civic Inclusion, Hamilton Immigration Partnership Council and the YWCA.
The first Multicultural Wellness Fair was held in May 2013 and since then has run annually. It has grown to be a highly attended mental health week event, both by service providers and community members, with 30 service providers and approximately 300 community members attending in 2016.
The MWF creates awareness about Hamilton’s wellness and health services to multicultural communities, including newcomer immigrants and refugees. Information and resources are provided in an entertaining and interactive environment. Cultural performances and food will be presented to provide attendees with the opportunity to appreciate Hamilton’s diverse cultures as well as hear the stories and voices of people who share their experience through performance or speeches.
Participating groups include but are not limited to Mental Health and Addictions, Counselling Services, Physical Wellbeing, Housing, Nutrition, and Cultural Community Associations. It is recommended that service providers bring information about their agency in different languages, if available.
As the event has grown so have costs associated with running it. This year we are reaching out to potential funders to help cover some of the expenses.
The registration fee for agencies wishing to have an information booth at the fair is $30.00. The money received from this is used to provide presenters and performers with a small honorarium for their contribution.
Want to sponsor the MWF2017 event? Check out our Sponsorship Package here.
If you would like any additional information on how to participate, volunteer or donate I am happy to answer questions and provide additional information.