Founder’s Message

All about collaboration

Thanks to our growing team The Creative Spark has worked with over 4000 students and reached out to other provinces and remote communities.  We continue to collaborate in depth with various mental health groups and organizations with related intentions, supporting the overall well-being of the community and in particular supporting youth and mental health initiatives.

In addition to focusing class activities around all things creative our highly collaborative model has helped ensure the Creative Spark continues to grow.   Creative Spark programming is now delivered to various age groups via school guidance councilors, community based mental health and addiction councilors and of course the teachers.   

The Creative Spark builds on a “trifecta buy-in” of the school  (including school boards, principals, teachers and their curriculum), community services (i.e. town/city progrCSFacilitatoramming, early childhood to seniors) and healthcare professionals.

I would like to point out that in addition to the teacher and community based facilitator, in association with provincial and local health services every Creative Spark class is attended by a qualified health councilor.   Health councilors are always from the community and are usually aware of high-risk students which allows the Creative Spark program to support both those individuals with special needs while at the same time ensure other participants benefit equally.

Always evolving the Creative Spark learns and shares with all collaborators allowing our programming to stay fresh and effective in supporting mental wellness and helping those struggling with mental illness.  Based on the Creative Spark “Creative Mindset” model class programming is always trying new ideas while ensure the underlying benefit includes resilience, persistence and healthy relationships.

From the beginning the Creative Spark has relied heavily on our community advisors, subject matter experts and collaborating organizations and individuals who help to deliver the Creative Spark in schools and the community.   I am extremely grateful to the board of directors that provide profound wisdom along with our Managing Director whom together ensures our goals and outcomes continue to be exemplary.

I am proud of the support of family and friends

Serious depression runs in my family.  Fortunately for me what my parents didn’t know about Mental Illness they made up for by talking, awkward as it was, to all of us and providing love and emotional support unconditionally.

Teaching art and improv to students I have seen how the CREATIVE SPARK project has given many young people confidence in themselves through creative expression. A pathway to resilience and Mental Wellness.

As an information technology architect I see a growing abundance of on-line mental health sites, unfortunately it becomes overwhelming and for many they don’t find the information they need when they need it.

Also, thank you to Fujitsu, UofA and Bell Canada for supporting the program and allowing me the opportunity to work on The Creative Spark. 

Rob Heighington – Noble Bridge NFP
Fortune 500 CIO Emeritus, Information Technology Architect, Project Manager, Art Instructor, Soccer Couch and founder of the Creative Spark

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