Young Adult Substance Use Program (YA-SUP)

Young adulthood is an "in-between" period of transitioning from adolescence to adulthood. That is why other names for people in this age group include Transition Aged Youth or Emerging Adults. It is a unique time for self-discovery, building relationships, and becoming independent. Many young adults also experience lots of uncertainty and change. This can make the transition challenging to navigate. The Young Adult Substance Use Program (YA-SUP) aims to meet these unique needs. We offer 2 separate streams. There is a Young Adult Stream for young adults (17-25) looking to make changes to their substance use. We also offer a Loved Ones stream, for loved ones of young adults with substance use problems.

“You define your goals. We are here to meet you where you are at and support you in reaching your goals.” 

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Your Care Team 

We have a multi-disciplinary and collaborative team with expertise in mental health and community support counselling, nursing, addiction psychiatry, and substance use research.

Clinicians

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Marina Kennedy, MSW

I'm Marina, a registered social worker who has been working with young people for nearly 15 years, dedicating the past 6 years to treating addictions and mental health. I'm an avid runner who loves hot summers and engaging children in philosophical discussions; I typically spend my downtime reading non-fiction or playing music.

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Mareena Mathew, NP

Hi, my name is Mareena, and I am a Nurse Practitioner. I have always worked in mental health and addiction service, and I have a special interest in working with youth. I love music, dance, outdoor activities, and spending time with my dog. 

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Kyla King 

Hi, I’m Kyla, and I am a Community Support Counsellor with the YA-SUP. In my spare time I enjoy listening to music, live music, practicing yoga and hiking.

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Michelle Venantius, MD

Hi, my name is Michelle, and I provide psychiatric consultation to the wonderful team at YA-SUP. When I am not at work, I am spending time with my family, trying new recipes, and finding creative ways to help out at schools.

Researchers

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Jacinda Burns

Hi, my name is Jacinda and I am a Research Assistant with the YA-SUP. In my free time, I like to hike, try new foods, and listen to podcasts.

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Jillian Halladay, RN, MSc

Hi, my name is Jillian, and I am a mental health nurse and researcher. I have helped with the development and evaluation of the YA-SUP. Outside of work, I like to hike, watch Netflix, try to cook, and lift weights.

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Myra Massey

Hi, my name is Myra, and I am a Research Assistant on the Young Adult Substance Use Program. Outside of work, I enjoy hiking, listening to music, and outdoor adventures.

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Kiran Punia, MSc

Hi, my name is Kiran, and I am a Research Assistant at the Peter Boris Centre for Addictions Research. I am excited to be helping out with the YA-SUP program. Outside of work I enjoy Netflix, trying cool new restaurants, and doing different types of workouts.

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Saba Khoshroo

Hi, my name is Saba, and I am a Research Assistant at the Peter Boris Centre for Addictions Research. I am excited to be helping out with the YA-SUP program. Outside of work I enjoy traveling/adventures, watching true crime docuseries and hanging out with friends.  

Leadership

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Holly Raymond, MSW

Hi, my name is Holly and I am a Director in the Mental Health and Addictions program at St. Joe's. I am very passionate about working with people who have experience with co-existing mental health and substance challenges. In my spare time I like to exercise, watch cooking shows, and spend time with my cat.

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Catherine McCarron, MSW

Hello, my name is Catherine, and I'm both a registered social worker and manager of the Young Adult Substance Use Program. In my free time I enjoy sailing and going on adventures with my niece and nephew.

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James MacKilop, PhD

I'm James and I direct the Peter Boris Centre for Addictions Research. I'm a psychologist and I'm interested in understanding the causes of substance use challenges and the best ways people can make changes in their lives. Outside of work, my wife and I wrangle two kids and a dog, and I'm a running enthusiast.