May is Mental Health Month. TRO acknowledges the importance of the optimal mental health and well-being of our Therapeutic Recreation (TR) professionals, clients and their families, as well as the larger community. We will keep the conversation going.

This year we want to highlight one of TRO’s Board Members, and Chair of the Memberships Services Committee, Blair Chard, R/TRO! Blair has been dedicated to the field of TR, with 16+ years of recreation therapy success in program design, project management, and service compliance.

Blair has worked in mental health since 2006, when he joined the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), as a Recreation Therapist in Toronto, ON. Since then, he has taken on several other roles at CAMH, including roles related to major project development, before moving to the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Center in 2019. Currently, Blair is a Recreation Therapist in the Adult Mental Health program at Providence Care in Kingston, ON.

Blair’s involvement in and contributions to the development of the Integrated Care Pathway included extensive investigation and research into evidence-based best practices and best practices for interdisciplinary teams. Blair consulted with disciplinary and governing bodies, and created a practical evidence-based tool that allowed for easy integration into current practices and work cultures.

Over the course of his career, Blair has led the planning of annual community barbecues, acquired extensive experience in developing patient-centered discharge plans, co-developed Integrated Care Pathway guidelines for Recreation Therapy’s Schizophrenia Pathway and represented the Recreation Therapy discipline in CAMH’s phase 1C development project, “Therapeutic Neighbourhood.”

In 2009, Blair obtained his R/TRO designation, and has since continued his professional development journey by attending various trainings and securing several certificates including a Mindfulness Certificate, Community Integration Certificate.  In 2017, Blair successfully completed his undergraduate studies through Brock University’s Professional Program, where his focus was recreation therapy.

Blair is a true health care and mental health champion, and we are happy to celebrate him and put him in the spotlight. Blair and other dedicated therapeutic recreation colleagues, through their daily work, remind us that mental health is health.  These extremely talented and committed professionas continue to demonstrate the importance and benefits of recreation on the mental health of their clients and patients. TRO will continue to advocate for and promote optimal health and well-being.

Established in 1999, Therapeutic Recreation Ontario (TRO) is the only professional association that represents Therapeutic Recreation practitioners in the province.

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