Local advocate receives Award for Innovation in Mental Health and Addictions Care for the Yukon

Chris Spencer is the recipient of the Council of the Federation Award for Innovation in Mental Health and Addictions Care in the Yukon. 

Presented in each province and territory for innovative initiatives that positively impact mental health and addictions care, the award recognizes individuals and organizations excelling in the field. Chris Spencer is a passionate Whitehorse resident who cares about the mental health and wellness of their community. They founded the Yukon Disc-versity Guild, a disc golf club designed to be a safe space for women, the Two-Spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, questioning, intersex and asexual (2SLGBTQQIA+) community and youth.

Chris chose to start a disc golf club because it promotes a connection with nature, allows people to connect with each other and has a low cost for entry.

Additional benefits of the club include the development of new community role models who provide inspiration and hope for young people, safer outdoor spaces and the representation of healthy lifestyles for women and 2SLGBTQQIA+ people. 

Chris also founded the “Feed your inner light” peer support group for people with diagnosed and undiagnosed eating disorders. Chris sits on Queer Yukon’s advisory committee for nonbinary and trans people and is also involved in the Canadian Mental Health Association Reach Out Support Line.

Premier Silver will be awarding Chris Spencer with a certificate and a $5,000 prize to advance their initiative and foster further innovation.

Congratulations to Chris Spencer for receiving the Award for Innovation in Mental Health and Addictions Care. Chris continues to work hard and is committed to making our Yukon communities safer places where diversity is acknowledged, valued and respected.

Premier Sandy Silver

Quick facts 
  • In spring 2021, Canada’s Premiers launched Promising Practices, a 13-episode podcast series to highlight innovative initiatives in mental health and substance use care in each province and territory.

  • Building on the success of the podcast, Canada’s Premiers announced the Council of the Federation Award for Innovation in Mental Health and Addictions Care in February 2022.

  • The award demonstrates provinces and territories’ continued commitment to encouraging further innovation in this area and to reducing the stigma of mental illness and addictions.

  • The Council of the Federation comprises all 13 provincial and territorial Premiers. It enables Premiers to work collaboratively, form closer ties, foster constructive relationships among governments, and show leadership on important issues that matter to Canadians.

Media contact 

Renée Francoeur
Cabinet Communications

Thibaut Rondel
Communications, Health and Social Services

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