Chantée Dardaine is from Toronto, ON. She works as a Registered Psychotherapist ( Qualifying ) with the CRPO providing support and emotional growth to individuals from all walks of life. She offers individual services to meet the diverse needs of people utilizing culturally adapted interventions. Chantée founded SELFCARE TO, a wellness organization offering tools and support on how to take care of your whole-self. Chantée loves to travel and uses this as an opportunity to learn new ways to be well. Her goal is to provide resources and advocacy about mental health to create more wellness spaces at home & at work. In her spare time C hantée is spending time with her family & friends, traveling, writing and advocating for mental health awareness.
Mapping Black Futures: What was your motivation to work in the healthcare sector?
Chantée Dardaine: I grew up with my parents in the healthcare sector so I was always interested and curious when I would visit them at work. Growing up I loved helping those who needed support & found myself drawn to those most vulnerable. I was motivated to give back as much as I could so I started to volunteer at a hospital when I was 18 and never looked back!
What has been your experience as a Black person in this space? How has your identity affected the ways in which you navigate at work?
At an early age I saw the difference of which cultures dominated certain positions. I knew I would have to navigate my feelings in these spaces. As I moved throughout my career I was inspired by the people of colour who were offering similar services as me. Even if I may not have fit into all spaces, I always knew I would fit in with the population I was planning on serving.
Tell me about your proudest moment at work.
My proudest moment at work was starting my own business. I always wanted to be an entrepreneur so I’m proud to know that I created something with the hopes of helping other people. All the years of soaking in the lived experiences of others helped me shape SELFCARE TO.
Do you feel as though there are adequate resources in place to support Black wellness, physically and mentally? What does that look like for you?
There are adequate resources in place to support Black wellness but that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for improvement. As more Black wellness practitioners emerge, I’m seeing more organizations and people involved with trying to bridge the gap of all the years where these spaces didn’t exist or did not fit the specific cultural needs for Black individuals.
Cultural adaptation is an important aspect to ensuring that there are resources that speak directly to our population. For me that looks like adapting traditional spaces, and having more black practitioners who are supporting wellness both physically and mentally.
In your opinion, what can the government do to support the physical and mental wellbeing of Black folks in Canada?
In 2018 the Government of Canada addressed the unique mental health challenges faced by Black Canadians. They committed $19 million to better support the mental health and well-being of Black Canadians. Some of the projects that received funding was the African Diaspora Association of the Maritimes and the Aspire for Higher Elite Basketball. This is an amazing start but in my opinion it shouldn’t stop here. With continued support I hope for more local grants and funding of black wellness organizations and research to help mitigate the challenges faced by Black people. There are many barriers involved but by providing more equitable access to effective and culturally appropriate services it can provide more options to Black Canadians seeking help.
How do you take care of your own wellbeing? Are there programs in place to support folks in your profession?
Selfcare has always been important to my wellbeing. Some of these activities are exercising, meditation, journaling, & traveling. I spent 3 months in South East Asia to challenge my norms and learn new ways to be well and will continue to find new ways around the world. I also have amazing supervisors which are in place to help me and support me.
If you’re interested in booking an appointment with Chantée, please call (647) 696-5924 or email firstname.lastname@example.org