The MOBYSS bus, an initiative of the Canadian Mental Health Association - York Region and South Simcoe, is making a stop at Vince's Market in East Gwillimbury as part of an awareness event in July.
"We just wanted the youth in the community to know or maybe parents to hear about it," said Maria Ciarlandini, ambassador for Vince's.
The MOBYSS bus is a mobile clinic for people aged 12 to 25. It provides free, confidential services to youth who need a safe space to talk about mental health or medical health needs. The bus is staffed by a nurse practitioner, youth mental health worker, and peer support specialist.
On July 8, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., the bus will be parked outside Vince's East Gwillimbury location at 19103A Leslie St. Visitors will be able to learn more about the bus and the services available.
"Having the large bus outside of our parking lot should be something that when people drive by they'll notice and say 'What's that' and again, it just brings up the conversation," Ciarlandini said.
During the event, Vince's will be hosting a barbecue from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The food will be free but there will be donation boxes set up to encourage those who are able to make a contribution to CMHA.
This awareness event and fundraiser is an extension of Vince's community product initiative. Through this program, a different food item is selected every few weeks and 15 per cent of the proceeds from the sale of that item are donated to a designated organization.
Each year a different local organization is chosen as the beneficiary and this year it is CMHA - York Region and South Simcoe.
"There is an issue with mental health that's going on, especially after the COVID pandemic and we do recognize that," Ciarlandini said about why the organization was chosen.
The barbecue and MOBYSS bus visits are both firsts for Vince's and customers from outside East Gwillimbury are also encouraged to attend.
"I think it's just a fun, a fun thing of bringing awareness, simple barbecue fundraising, something we've never done before. So we're excited," Ciarlandini said.