CORRECTION: NS Health launches free mental health and wellness Text4HopeNS tool to support those affected by wildfires


Nova Scotia Health’s Mental Health and Addictions program, in collaboration with the QEII Foundation and the Global Psychological eHealth Foundation, is launching a supportive text message tool today for any Nova Scotian affected by the wildfires. It is called Text4HopeNS.

“We know this is a very stressful and uncertain time for many people in the province,” said Dr. Vincent Agyapong, Nova Scotia Health’s Central Zone chief of psychiatry and head of psychiatry at Dalhousie University. “We hope this supportive mental health and wellness tool will help provide comfort to anyone who may be struggling.”

Nova Scotians can text HopeNS to 393939 to subscribe for six months of supportive text messages, free of charge.

Text4HopeNS is an evidence-based tool that helps people identify and adjust the negative thoughts, feelings, and behaviours stressful times might provoke.

Dr. Agyapong himself was displaced by the Fort MacMurray, Alberta wildfires in 2016. A similar Text4Hope service has helped people in that province manage their mental health while dealing with wildfires.

People receive a set of daily messages that offer advice and encouragement helpful in developing healthy personal coping skills and resiliency. Community members subscribe to receive ongoing supportive content. Standard text message rates may apply.

“When our communities are in crisis, QEII Foundation donors often step forward and want to help," said Susan Mullin, president and CEO of the QEII Foundation. "By providing $15,000 to help rapidly launch Text4HopeNS, donors are supporting mental health care for those in need.

“This daily mental health support is one way we can wrap our arms around our community during this very difficult time," she said.


Nova Scotia Health’s Mental Health and Addictions Program
Nova Scotians can continue to self-refer to Nova Scotia Health’s Mental Health and Addictions Program by calling the Intake Service Line (toll-free) 1-855-922-1122, to be connected to a clinician Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., with extended hours until 8 p.m. on Tuesdays.

The Intake Service provides triage, screening, and navigation for programs offered through Mental Health and Addictions Program at Nova Scotia Health (and IWK). This line has voicemail only on evenings and weekends.

Access Wellness Nova Scotia is a free single-session supportive counselling service for individuals, couples, or families. Trained counsellors can help people manage stress, mild to moderate depression or anxiety, relationship issues, general mental health concerns, concerns related to alcohol and drug use, personal loss, and more.
Visit or call 1-833-691-2282 to make an appointment.

The Peer Support Telephone Service is available to all Nova Scotians 18 and up, experiencing mild mental health and/or substance use concerns or, who are feeling isolated, alone, anxious, distressed, or need someone to talk to who will listen with empathy and without judgment. The trained peer supporter will provide non-urgent social and emotional support, reassurance, and encouragement to callers, as well as information regarding community services. Call toll free at 1-800-307-1686.

The Provincial Mental Health and Addictions Crisis Line is available 24/7 for anyone experiencing a mental health crisis or someone concerned about them. Call (toll-free) 1-888-429-8167.

Visit Mental Health and Addiction’s Program website,, to learn more about our services, resources, and tools.

QEII Foundation
Transformed health. Transformed lives. This is our vision. For more than two decades, the QEII Foundation has been advancing health care at the QEII by funding new technologies, medical research, innovation, and professional education that contribute to life-changing moments experienced every day by patients and their loved ones. With incredible support from the community, we are making health care better for Atlantic Canadians.