George and Tami Cope: Pioneers of the mental health revolution

Innovation and Evolution

Long before mental health was a mainstream conversation in Canada, Tami and George Cope were pushing for action — and asking people to talk.

In 2008, when George was named President and CEO of Bell Canada, he strategically and methodically created a movement that is now celebrated as the nation’s leading social impact program focused on mental health — Bell Let’s Talk. The initiative, which has committed well over $108 million to mental health programs since its inception in 2010, has forever changed the conversation about mental health while helping countless people across Canada access life-changing support.

A passionate advocate of youth mental health, over the years George has championed Kids Help Phone as a significant partner of Bell Let’s Talk — the evolution of a long-standing relationship that first began in 1989 when Bell Canada came on board as one of our four founding donors. Together, the two organizations have transformed the landscape of mental healthcare in Canada by raising awareness and leveraging the power of technology to reach ever-greater numbers of young people from coast to coast to coast.

Tami is especially passionate about the possibilities of technology to break down barriers, particularly for youth at-risk. After joining the Board of Directors in 2016, she championed the launch of two critical initiatives that have profoundly advanced our ability to reach even more young people — including many youth at-risk in Canada today: Crisis Text Line powered by Kids Help Phone and the development of Finding Hope, our action plan for supporting First Nations, Inuit and Métis young people.

From the start, George and Tami were immediately drawn to our mission to ensure no young person in Canada is ever alone in their time of need. “We believe that every child deserves the opportunity to be heard and supported in their time of struggle,” says Tami.

Kids Help Phone offers a service that is nimble, accessible, compassionate and allows young people to feel safe and protected when reaching out for help.

Today, Tami and George are more dedicated than ever to their mission to ignite ongoing progress for mental healthcare in Canada — and they remain inspired by Kids Help Phone’s commitment to meeting the constantly changing needs of young people. “Kids Help Phone’s ability to evolve alongside young people in a technology-driven world gives us great confidence in its future as a leading pillar of accessible mental healthcare for everyone in Canada,” says George.

“Both personally and through Bell Canada, we are incredibly proud to support Kids Help Phone so that young people will always have somewhere to turn.”