Improving Youth Mental Health and Well-Being During the COVID-10 Recovery Phase in BC

As of May 1, 2023, the start of Mental Health Week in Canada, Dr. Hasina Samji and Dr. Evelyn Stewart have released the Improving Youth Mental Health and Well-Being During the COVID-10 Recovery Phase in BC report. The top three recommendations in the report are: 

  1. serve underserved populations better
  2. improve collaboration among mental health partners
  3. enhance social and emotional learning strategies in schools and community settings

The 13 recommendations were informed by data collected by the Personal Impacts of COVID-19 (PICS) Survey and the Youth Development Instrument, scientific literature, interviews with youth and two deliberative dialogues that included representatives of four provincial ministries, education, health, the non-profit sector, parents and dozens of young people. 

To see the report, click here. 

PICS Study

Recruitment for this study has concluded. Thank you to everyone who participated!

The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has had major impacts on the personal lives of Canadian children, youth and adults. Direct effects like infections and hospitalizations dominate news headlines. But less is known about the thoughts, feelings and actions of people living through this pandemic. We are interested in learning about these impacts, and about which resources and services have been most helpful over time. This information can then be shared with government and health leaders to address immediate needs and prepare for future potential waves or pandemics.

We invite you to participate in a survey that will collect information about yourself, and (for parents) about your child. While not necessary, you will also be welcome to provide updates over a one-year period.

Study Information

PICS study participants OCDWho can participate?
Anyone over the age of 8 years can participate in this survey. We invite children, youth and adults to share their own experiences, and also ask parents about their children. Parents/caregivers can provide consent for their children under the age of 19 years to participate. And we would really like to hear from children directly. Parents can participate with or without their children’s involvement.

What does the study involve?
Participants will be asked to complete a self-report survey. In addition, parents/caregivers will be asked to report on their child’s experiences. Those willing will be invited to repeat the survey monthly, to share how their experiences change over time with shifts in the pandemic.

Your participation is entirely voluntary, and you can withdraw at any time by contacting the study coordinator at

How much of a time commitment is this study?
Each survey may take between 10 to 20 minutes to complete.

How will I receive the survey?
You will receive a unique survey link via email.

How do I participate in this survey?
You can fill out the initial screening form, which will take you to the appropriate information and consent/assent forms. You will then be emailed a survey link. You can also email or call the PICS research team at 604-875-2000 ext. 3068.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. Who will use the data collected during this study and what for?
    This study is being co-led by Dr. Evelyn Stewart and Dr. Hasina Samji, and is funded partly by the BC Ministry of Health. Dr. Stewart is a psychiatrist at BC Children’s Hospital and professor at the University of British Columbia. Dr. Samji is an epidemiologist and assistant professor at Simon Fraser University. Results of the study may be published online, in peer-reviewed journal articles, and presented at national or international conferences and to government and other officials. Your participation will always remain strictly confidential, and your name will never appear in any publication of the results.
  2. How many people will take part in this survey?
    We expect that up to 3,000 children/youth, parents/caregivers and other adults will enroll in this study.
  3. Does this survey involve in-person visits?
    No, you and your family (if applicable) will complete this survey at home.
  4. How long will the online survey take to complete?
    Each survey will take between 25-40 minutes to complete. For parents this includes a survey on themselves and on their child or children.
  5. Will it cost me anything to participate in this survey?
    There is no cost for taking part in this survey.
  6. Will I receive compensation for participating in this survey?
    You will have the opportunity to receive a $10 gift for completing the survey. In addition, you will be entered into a draw to win one of ten $50 gift cards announced each month. Each participating family member will be a separate entry for the draw. 
  7. Who can I contact with additional questions that are not addressed here?
    If you have any questions or would like further information about this study before or during participation, you can contact the study coordinator at or by calling 604-875-2000 ext. 3068.

Consent & Assent Forms

Adult Form Parent Form Child/Youth Form