Amanda Blair Roberson
...is a veteran, self -taught makeup artist, working for renowned publications and fashion houses. After graduating with honours in Humber College's Advertising & Communications Program, Amanda found her passion in creating Wellness programming, providing access to free workshops centred in mental health, resilience, mental wellness and physical wellness. With previous experience in cultural programming & Partnerships working with organizations like Refinery29, Universal Music, AGO, Amanda's work is dedicated to creating expressive experiences that celebrate art, culture and social justice and is passionate about creating sustainable change.
Meghan Yuri Young
...is a writer and producer as well as a correspondent on Breakfast Television. She’s been in the media industry for over a decade and has since branched off to focus on art initiatives, wellness and the mental health community — the latter through the founding of The Sad Collective. As a speaker and advocate, her goal is to not only promote happier, healthier lifestyles, but also awareness and activism, both individually and collectively.
...is a Partner and Creative Director at 123w – one of Canada’s leading agencies based out of Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal. Born and raised in the Philippines, and growing up in Toronto, she brings a diverse point of view that mixes her passion for design, creativity and business strategy to Canadian design and advertising. She believes in building brands through a human experience: How we can bring humanity into how we work together, how we approach work, and how we communicate as brands. How we can design something that has a direct impact on our everyday experience. How we use creativity to not only build business, but to use creativity to appeal to the best in us all.
The Sad Collective is a community firmly believing in the power of vulnerability. We believe in the freedom of crying, the strength in admitting we’re not always fine and the courage to seek support when it’s needed because, let's face it, we can't do this alone. Not only does SAD help to create safe and accessible spaces for emotional expression — it is a catalyst for conversation, with the goal of bringing mental health to the forefront of social consciousness.
What we've done
Over the past seven years, The Sad Collective has focused on community wellness by creating online resources, in-person programming, access to various forms of therapy and more. Although our programming is for anyone and everyone, it was created specifically with BIPOC in mind by a BIPOC, female-led team. SAD strives to create more accessibility within inaccessible spaces for increased inclusivity within wellness.
Have developed in-person programming, conversations and celebrations that have centred around direct support, physical wellness, community care and experts within the mental health sector. We have partnered with such organizations as UofT, Women's College of Health, Tim Hortons Foundation, Hijabi Ballers, Laniege, Artscape, stackt market, Indigo Books, Footlocker and more.
Digital Ecosystem & Wayfinding: Resource guides for physical activities, mindfulness activities, direct mental health support, advocacy and justice as well as creating an online space for connection and community.
What started as grassroots, guerilla-style advocacy and story-telling--mostly online--has evolved into thoughtful year-round programming focused on providing crucial access to mental health resources in unique ways that continues the mission of destigmatizing this issue.
Current care by S.A.D.
Speed Dating for a Therapist...
Finding the right therapist is basically like dating, so we're breaking down barriers and bringing a little fun to the mix. Participants cycled through qualified therapists, spending 5 minutes with one before moving onto the next. This is a time to discover and chat with a multifaceted group of experts while learning about what mental health resources are available through the SAD Collective.
Home Safe is a self defence / compassion workshop aimed at providing tools to female-identified individuals in an increasingly violent world. It addresses the many layers of abuse and trauma faced as well as what it means to be and feel safe. It also celebrates all the wonderful ways in which women/non-binary folks are empowered. It will grow to address males through thoughtfully planned workshops for them.
TYT (Take Your Time)...
TYT is a 6 month experience designed to help other community spaces and organizations bring intentional mental health and wellness programming to the table. It is co-created in order to specifically address the needs and wants of the group of individuals it is serving.
SOFT is a $1000 grant created to empower individuals' first step journeys into seeking clinical advice. It's meant to prioritize those who face systematic and financial barriers. SAD is committed to ensuring equitable access for all Canadians, with particular emphasis on the following priority groups: Persons Living with Mental Illness, Persons of Colour, Persons with Disabilities, Indigenous Persons and LGBTQIA2S+. SAD acknowledges that there are other population groups in Canada that face barriers. However, we believe the priority groups identified above are the ones for SAD to focus on at this time. The Sad Collective has so far given out 10 SOFT grants, each to community organizations. representing marginalized individuals. These include Weston Commons, Parvai, Collective Society, Flaunt It and Black Men's Therapy Fund. We also support our volunteers with $1000 stipends. So far…over 300+ hours of free mental health programming provided. Over a thousand individuals participated in one or more of SAD programming offerings. Over $20,000 in unrestricted funding given to support the aid of seeking clinical advice to various community groups.