The CArmha Project
A research study focusing on the impacts of cannabis usage on mental health.
“IT MAKES ME FEEL MORE COMFORTABLE TO HAVE A PERSON UNDERSTAND WHAT I’M GOING THROUGH, WHO HAS LIVED A SIMILAR EXPERIENCE TO ME. IT FEELS SAFER”
– Interview participant
The CARMHA Project was a peer-led community based research project on the relationship between cannabis use and mental health. AAWEAR (Alberta Alliance Who Educate and Advocate Responsibly) and Habitus Collective focused on the relationship of cannabis use and mental health for at-risk populations such as people who use substances, are houseless or facing houselessness, and those who face considerable challenges meeting their basic needs.
As a community-based research project, people with lived experience from our target audience led the project, participating and designing every phase of the research. This approach built capacity, skills, and new knowledge for people within these communities, as well as provided evidence for influencing public policy.
The CARMHA Project was one of 14 projects that undertook this work nationally. Funded by the Mental Health Commission of Canada, these projects aimed to understand the positive and negative impact of cannabis use on mental health. With a national footprint, collectively, this research could create stronger, more responsive, and supportive communities, especially for those people who typically lack power or opportunity to create change.
The project also recognizes and gives thanks to the support provided by the University of Calgary who brought research strategy and analytical support to the project.
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