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Why a Career in Mental Health Support is Important and Fulfilling

By: Ashley Fazekas

Published On: July 13, 2022

Mental health is a universal subject that rarely gets the attention it deserves, with 1 in 8 people living with a mental health disorder worldwide. Mental health conditions and substance use disorders are increasing everywhere, with a 13% rise in the past 10 years globally, with anxiety and depression being the most common. This contributes to the rise in drug use and addiction as well, creating even more issues and necessary treatment. 

The Drug Crisis in British Colombia 

The illicit drug crisis in BC is still going strong, claiming more lives than motor-vehicle incidents, homicides or suicides, and fire or drowning-related deaths combined. According to the most recent B.C. Coroners Service Report, since the start of 2022 in British Colombia alone there have been 722 deaths attributed to illicit drug toxicity. Of those deaths, 73% were aged 30 to 59, and 76% were male. Most of these occurred very close to home in Vancouver, Surrey and Victoria. This equates to an average of about 5.4 deaths per day in April alone. 

About 20% of the world’s children and adolescents suffer from mental health conditions, with suicide being the second leading cause of death among 15 to 29-year-olds. Despite these numbers, the amount of government funding for mental health and addiction is less than 2% globally. The stigma around mental health can be tremendous, but getting past the fear and misunderstanding around them can help us move forward together to support more treatment and care. 

The thing is that anyone is at risk of developing a mental disorder or drug dependency, and it is important for people to have easy access to services and support systems. While there is still a large gap between available treatment to people who need it, there is so much that can be done in this profession to work towards closing that gap. 

A Life-Changing Career Path 

One path toward working in this important field is getting a certificate as a Mental Health and Addictions Support Worker. Our career program provides entry-level competencies in the field, with valuable knowledge and information to step your foot in the door of this in-demand area. You will learn about the basic foundations and spectrum of mental health, substance use and abuse, behavioural issues, mental health in regards to age, sex, and ethnicity, treatment and services. 

The program is also accredited by the Canadian Addiction Counsellors Certification Federation (CACCF), which is recognized in addiction credentialing both in Canada and internationally. This offers many options for the type of career you can build in this industry. Read more in the next part of this blog series to learn about all of the career options straight out of the program, and about continuing your certification process to advance your profession and look into counselling options. 

Everyone knows someone who has been affected by mental health struggles. If this is an area that you have ever considered as an option for what you do on a daily basis, and you feel like supporting people going through this battle is something you want to help with, then building a career in the Mental Health or Addictions Support Worker field is definitely a good option to consider. 


The information contained in this post is considered true and accurate as of the publication date. However, the accuracy of this information may be impacted by changes in circumstances that occur after the time of publication. Ashton College assumes no liability for any error or omissions in the information contained in this post or any other post in our blog.


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