Department of Psychiatry


Past events:

Connecting the Dots in OCD

Frederick W. Thompson Anxiety Disorders Centre

When: June 8th, 2019
Time: 1:15-4:30pm
Location: Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
McLaughlin Auditorium EG18A

More information and registration.

or contact:

The Frederick W. Thompson Anxiety Disorders Centre invites you to join us for a free afternoon educational event open to people living with OCD, their family members, friends and anyone that is interested in learning more!

A variety of topics will be covered including:

  • Effective treatments
  • How families can better help their loved ones
  • Living a healthy life when affected by this illness

Download the event flyer »

OCD Walk Toronto
Saturday, June 15, 2019
Location: Sunnybrook Park

Join us as we walk together to raise funds for OCD education, research, and services at the Frederick W. Thompson Anxiety Disorders Centre.

For more information, visit »

The 2nd Annual Recovery Run, hosted by Bellwood Health Services, in support of True Patriot Love.

September 15 9:00am-1:30pm

See: for details.

Sunnybrook speaker series – All in the family: supporting a loved one with OCD or anxiety

Tuesday, October 16 6:30pm-8:30pm
McLaughlin Auditorium, Bayview Campus
E Wing Ground Floor, 2075 Bayview Avenue

  • Understanding OCD and How to Talk About It Within the Family: Ketrina Dilo, Mental Health Clinician
  • How OCD Impacts Families and How You Can Change It: Sandra Cushing, Social Worker, Frederick W. Thompson Anxiety Disorders Centre Intensive Residential and Day Program for OCD
  • How To Take Care of Yourself as a Caregiver: Dr. Steven Selchen, Director of Education, Frederick W. Thompson Anxiety Disorders Centre
  • Moderator: Dr. Peggy Richter, Head, Frederick W. Thompson Anxiety Disorders Centre

Free admission and free parking (Garage One)

Please RSVP your attendance by October 12, 2018:

By Christine Chiu

Changing Minds Conference, Ottawa - Saturday November 3, 2018
The inaugural Conference for Changing Minds in Ottawa was attended by clinicians, people afflicted with OCD, friends, families and other supporters alike. We gathered together in our combined interest to advocate for more OCD awareness and education. The great line-up of Speakers presented seminars/workshops on different types of OCD, various modalities for the management of OCD, past and current research on treatments, plus resources for friends and families and other supporters to deal with a loved one suffering with OCD.

Check out their website: for up to date news, ongoing initiatives, and upcoming events; their email is Congratulations to the team of Changing Minds: Dr. Connie Dalton, Dr. Mandisa Peterson, Carol Miller, Barb Nesrallah, Gayle McLelland, and Tara McClinchey for a successful event!

These are the points that resonated with me:

1) What are your reasons to change; what's in your life worth changing for?
2) Accept the consequences of your fears.
3) As human beings we are resistant to change hence 44% dropout of gym membership.
4) Rather than spending time on rituals and compulsions spend time on things you care about.
5) One of the shortfalls in OCD treatment according to statistics from research show that "Over 70% of OCD patients are undiagnosed by their psychiatrist (Wahl et al, 2010)" therefore psychoeducation and encouraging realistic treatment goals are key to ensure better understanding.
6) OCD constantly questions who you are and doubts you hence it's coined the "Doubting Disease".
7) What do you value in your life? Who are you outside of OCD?
8) Challenge your negative beliefs of self.
9) Identify and work on personal strengths.
10) Living your life without OCD – Imagine that!

I attended other OCD conferences including the "International Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders
Foundation (IOCDF) 25th Annual Conference" in Washington, DC this Summer 2018 and The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) "OCD and Related Disorders Conference" in Toronto last Fall 2017 which I found were both exceptional in their approach on OCD awareness and education. The best part was meeting people from all over the world who can understand and relate to me; some of whom I still keep in contact with today. However, I felt the "Changing Minds Conference" offered information on current Canadian content, and the interactive group discussions and fun role playing really enhanced the learning experience. Plus, the trip itself to Ottawa eventually became an important exercise in exposure and response prevention (ERP) therapy.

My friend who attended the "Changing Minds Conference" with me has given me permission to mention his struggles with OCD. The rituals and compulsions that plagued him for many years affected our trip to Ottawa. Eventually, enough was enough the trip to Ottawa was more important, he took his exposures to the next level. I too had to resist my rituals and compulsions which was hard to do and exhausting. The goal to have an enjoyable and educational trip superseded the symptoms of OCD, that was our motivation. We supported each other with positive encouragement, imposing time limitations, praising our baby step accomplishments, trusting in our willingness and more importantly reminding each other to be self-compassionate. The trip to the "Changing Minds Conference" in Ottawa helped us move further along in our recovery journey.

Christine's bio:

My name is Christine Chiu, I am an advocate for more awareness, education and accessible treatments for the OCD and mental health community. I have my Bachelor of Commerce degree from Ryerson University along with an Event Management diploma from George Brown College. On my creative side, I acquired a Fashion Merchandising diploma from the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT). My mental health education credentials are WRAP (Wellness Recovery Action Plan) with Fitness certificate, Peer Zone, Pathways to Recovery certificate, Mental Health First Aid certificate and I am currently pursuing my Peer Support Training designation.

As a Facilitator and Committee member of an OCD support group called the Toronto West OCD Group I endeavour to help people afflicted with OCD, their friends, family and other supporters by providing a comfortable and confidential safe space to share their experiences. I am passionate about helping people who are struggling with this debilitating disease so that they may live an enjoyable and fulfilling life despite their OCD. I continuously attend conferences, workshops, webinars and podcasts to further broaden my knowledge. My ongoing volunteer and fundraising work for OCD Walk Toronto, Sunnybrook/Frederick W Thompson Anxiety Disorders Centre, The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health and the Toronto West OCD Group have allowed me the opportunity to give back to the organizations that have helped me on my recovery journey.


Ottawa Institute of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

November 3, 2018
Ottawa, ON

On November 3 this full day event brings together individuals living with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), their supporters, and mental health care professionals in a supportive, collaborative, and interactive environment.

In addition to a plenary session and catered lunch with speaker, we have three breakout sessions, giving the opportunity to choose topics that are most relevant to you, including:

  • Advances in OCD treatment
  • Best practices in biological treatment for OCD
  • Step by step guide to exposure response prevention (ERP) delivery
  • CBT treatment for children and youth
  • Decreasing accommodation with supportive strategies
  • Increasing motivation for treatment
  • Personal pathways to change and recovery

We are excited about our initial line-up of speakers, including Dr. Peggy Richter(MD Psych), Dr. Connie Dalton (C.Psych), Dr. Jennifer Karp (C.Psych), Dr. Caitlin Claggett Woods (Supervised C.Psych), and Mark Freeman (mental health author and blogger, Everybody Has a Brain ).

See for details.

What's new in Hoarding?

A conference aimed at individuals with hoarding difficulties, their loved ones, and service providers to share emerging knowledge.

Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
McLaughlin Auditorium (E–Wing, Ground Floor)
Friday June 1, 2018
8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Morning session: Service providers only
Afternoon session: Open to all (Service providers and general public)
Service providers $135 (full day)
Students $75 (full day)
Public $15 (afternoon only)

View the full agenda and registration form

Strength and Resiliency:

Tools for Individuals Living with OCD and their Families

Join us for a free afternoon educational event open to people experiencing OCD, their family members and friends, and the broader public interested in learning more.
Learn more about what families need to know in supporting someone experiencing OCD and ask questions of our expert panel.
Featuring our special guest Dr. Diana Brecher:
Bouncing Back: Becoming More Resilient and Effective Using Your Strengths

Sunday, March 25
1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
WHERE: Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, 2075 Bayview Avenue, Toronto
McLaughlin Auditorium, E Wing, Ground Floor, Room EG18a

View the Webinar:
Download: Bouncing Back Workshop PDF