Register for our New Support Group for Men
Starting April 30, 2020, we will be meeting weekly, Thursdays from 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM Pacific Time on Zoom.
To register: Click here or scroll down to fill out the registration form.
Once registered, you will be provided meeting access information.
Even in the best of times, many men suffer from a lack of strong social networks, with serious effects on their health and well-being. In our current social crisis, there is a heightened need for men and boys to have a safe place to connect and deal with their problems and needs.
We are responding with a new support group for men. Join a safe and welcoming community to discuss issues like employment loss, isolation, family tension, access to children for separated fathers, and domestic abuse against men, which are all elevated at this time. However, any issues at all will be welcome in this group.
This program is being delivered by the new Vancouver branch of the Canadian Centre for Men and Families, a national network of men’s health and social service facilities.
The program will be hosted via Zoom video conferencing. We are requiring all participants to appear with both video and audio in order to simulate, as closely as possible, an actual group meeting.
We will provide a space for men to gather together, and be heard with compassion, to share feelings, personal true stories and be accepted and not judged. We want to support healing, forgiveness and restitution in families where possible, and individuals where needed. Which is to say not all families can be healed or restored, and forgiveness does not mean putting your self or children in danger again. After men have been heard, we want to provide tools, education and options for moving on, healing and starting over again. Supporting their children and self is a priority.
We can serve men, fathers, their children, boys, who are feeling hurt, betrayed or personal loss by their loved ones, family or work space. Present pain or past pain.
At this time, we are limiting this program to adult age men only. We anticipate developing future programs for male youth.
About our Facilitators
Our facilitators are Chris Russell and Fiona Wang
About Chris Russell
Born in Vancouver BC in 1967, I grew up with my Dad and two big brothers. My Dad instilled in me my commitment to fatherhood, as he was very committed to us. My mother was absent for most of my life through bad advice from therapists while she was struggling with our family’s break up.
I have always been interested in people, and early in life decided that is how I wanted to make a living, by helping people. I finished my BA in Psychology at Simon Fraser University in 1996, and started my independent counselling practice right away. I focused upon people with childhood trauma and emotional scars. This soon evolved into a larger interest in couples and helping people in their marriages, relationships and intimacy. In this practice I helped many couples and families work through struggles in domestic living and intimacy. This work also grew to include alternative relationships and lifestyles.
My interests in therapy have always been guided through my own needs and experiences. My first marriage was with a child abused woman, who had deep scars and anger towards men. There I learned for the first time that children were abused in families, through her stories of her own childhood. I also experienced first hand the abuse of an angry jealous woman, and decided early in this marriage that I needed to exit lest she kill me physically, emotionally or spiritually. When I did leave her, I made sure that I would be able to bring my son with me. I was a single dad for most of my son’s life. His mother was not absent, and did her best to be a good mom. It was these early adulthood experiences that guided my helping people with anger issues and emotional scars.
I continued to educate myself in psychology. I study consciousness, personality and emotions. I read immensely in all the modern psychology researchers, and gained knowledge of modern understandings in consciousness, mental illness, personality disorders, relationship therapies and more. I have finished my own thesis in psychology exploring the connection between consciousness and intimate relationships. I have also researched and written about spirituality, faith and inner growth. I explored personally Christianity, then moved onward with an open mind to all of the world’s perennial faiths. I practice my own spiritual beliefs through meditation, personal awareness and community building.
Which brings me to my present phase of life. After my second failed marriage, and broken family, again with an abused woman who had not herself healed from her personal emotional scars from her childhood, I was inspired to create a space for men to get support in their struggles with broken families. In my usual independent approach, I dived in and just started. I wanted to provide a temporary home to live in, and individual as well as group sessions for men (and their children) in pain. I learned a lot in the outreach, which ended from necessity.
My continued focus is in building a non-profit facility for people to strengthen their minds, heal their hearts, and grow spiritually. I am doing this by offering one on one counselling and coaching. I also offer workshops on strengthening the mind and educating people about their minds. I offer group meetings for specific common mental illnesses like depression and anxiety. I am working on another thesis. This one is a theory of mind, that expands upon the past five decades of psychological theories by adding eastern knowledge. I am creating a new mind map, showing all the developmental phases of a healthy mind.
About Fiona Wang
Fiona was born and raised in Wuhan, a city where censorship is still implemented and mandated, and this is where her interest in free speech and social issues first began. She has decided to dedicate her research area, in both Vancouver and Toronto, to the history and development of free speech. She is particularly interested in protecting section 2(b) Freedom of Expression in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom. Fiona is a licensed Paralegal with the Law Society of Ontario and joins us with a Master of Arts in Criminology and a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. She is also an avid NBA fan and has a tattoo of Steph Curry and Dwyane Wade on her right arm. To conclude with her all-time favourite quote from George Orwell, “If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.”
To register, please complete the following form and select the program #3 Men’s Support Group (National). In registering, you are agreeing to join meetings with both video and audio, to provide notice of changes to your contact information and you are deemed to have agreed to our CCMF Vancouver Support Group Confidentiality and Consent Policy.