Research Projects


Co-designing new systems of mental health support during COVID-19 for people with long-term experience of complex barriers to employment

Status: Active

Project Lead: Skye Barbic

Other: Amanda Kwan

'Links to Employment' is a supported employment program operating in Vancouver's downtown and DTES, and community of Vernon. It is based on the model of Individual Placement and Support (IPS), the current “gold standard” for employment support for adults experiencing mental illness. However, unique to this IPS program is its integration with primary care.

The overall objective of this project is to better understand and support the employment and well-being needs of complex vulnerable adult populations who are currently experiencing persistent and multiple barriers (e.g., housing insecurity/homelessness, mental illness, substance use, etc.). We are conducting a mixed-methods evaluation to understand how an IPS program embedded within primary care settings is being experienced, to what extent participation in the program changes barriers to employment, and to assess the programs impact on health, social, and employment outcomes over time.