Stride supports youth and adults struggling with mental health or addictions as they seek meaningful employment.

Our team considers your unique situation, helping you prepare for employment, find a job, and encourage you as you begin your new job. Whether you choose to engage face-to-face with an employment specialist, attend regular workshops or receive support from a peer mentor, Stride helps you build the confidence and skills needed to find and keep your job.

Stride promises to treat everyone with dignity and respect.

CLIENT Bill of Rights

Our Vision

Stride envisions a world in which barriers to employment have been eliminated for people living with mental health and/or addictions challenges. 

Our Mission

Stride is committed to providing person centered support to empower people living with mental health and/or addiction challenges to gain and maintain meaningful employment. 

Our Values

Stride recognizes that employment and self-determination contribute significantly to a person’s sense of dignity, independence and quality of life.

Stride believes that people living with mental health and/or addiction challenges make significant contributions to society.

Stride respects the individual needs and strengths of each person. We work collaboratively with partners and individuals we serve to assist them in identifying and achieving their employment goals.

We Believe

  • In treating people with dignity and respect
  • In all individuals having the opportunity to achieve their employment goals
  • In providing service levels that exceed expectations for those we serve
  • In creative, innovative responses to the ever-changing political, economic and work environments

Our Philosophy


Stride believes that all individuals facing mental health and/or addiction challenges have the right to participate in those aspects of life that are most valued including involvement in a variety of work opportunities that form and integral component of overall well-being.


Stride believes that wellness is possible for every individual and focus is on working with the individual towards achieving personal wellness goals. Our agency recognizes that services should be provided according to individual needs and desires. We also respect the autonomy of the individual to make decisions affecting their present and future employment status.


We recognize our staff and volunteers as key to the organization’s success. Staff and volunteers of Stride are committed to providing high quality services that facilitate individuals’ attempts at gaining and maintaining work. We have a commitment to management practices that facilitate open communication and allow participation in problem solving and program development and implementation. We continually seek new ways and means of being responsive to the ever-changing needs in the community.


Stride works cooperatively with other community agencies and groups to provide comprehensive person-centred services. These services are provided in a manner which upholds the value, dignity and rights of each individual, without discrimination, based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, sexual preference, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability. We recognize our obligation to maintain confidentiality and protect the individual right of every person we serve.

We believe in accountability to all our stakeholders. We recognize the value of public participation in planning and implementation of service programs. We strive to improve the lives of individuals facing mental health and/or addiction challenges by offering the training and support necessary to improve employability and work preparedness. It is our privilege and responsibility to provide the best service possible to enhance each individual’s independence in the community and celebrate their success.

“This was my first time having a peer mentor and it was definitely a different experience than what I had before with mental health professionals. I enjoyed how it was more casual and how much my Employment Peer Mentor related to me; that aspect alone differs in comparison to more formal treatments I have accessed before.”

Our Partners and Funders

We work with a wide variety of municipal, provincial and federal agencies, as well as non-profit organizations to provide our services.


See the full list

Our Past, Present and Future!

Our team, board and partners work with purpose and integrity.

2020-2021 ANNUAL REPORTRead our Strategic Plan


A Brief History of Stride



The opening of Oasis Work Program in Oakville and the Work Project Program in Burlington with funding from the Federal Job Development Grant Assistance Program through Canada Employment and Immigration and Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA)


Amalgamated to become Halton Co-ordinated Work Program, funded by the Ministry of Health


Renamed Halton Work Programme, which was incorporated as a Registered Charitable Organization


New site opens in Acton


Re-locate head office to Milton


Name Change! Stride is launched


Head offices moves to new site in Milton with CMHA-Halton 2008: South Halton Café established for work experience


Employment Connections introduced 2013: Accredited by the Canadian Centre for Accreditation. Become a member of Mindful Employer Canada Partnership agreement with Halton Hills Public Library relocate to 55 Ontario Street South, Milton


Sign charter for “No Wrong Door” introduce French services


Stride receives full accreditation with the Canadian Centre for Accreditation

Board of Directors.

Stride acknowledges the vital contribution in support and guidance received from the Board of Directors.





Frank De Vuono

A member of the Stride Board of Directors since June, 2014, Frank served as chair of the Nominating and Governance Committee from 2017 to 2019. Frank is a sworn member of law enforcement currently assigned to the Investigative Services Division. With mental health training in "Crisis Outreach and Support", "Crisis Intervention", and "Mobile Crisis and Rapid Response". Frank's contribution to our mission and daily services is significant. He is currently studying at Wilfrid Laurier University and holds multiple degrees, diplomas and certifications from Niagara College and the Ontario Police College. he has participated in several multi-jurisdiction investigations involving GTA Law Enforcement Agencies. He is a manager and player of a local soccer team and a resident of Oakville.



Fatima Ul-Haq
Vice Chair

Fatima joined the Stride Board of Directors in February 2016. With over 10 years in project management in the Healthcare and Public sector, she offers valuable insights into our program. With strengths in strategic planning, organizational design, process/quality improvement, change management and project management, Fatima’s contribution to the overall leadership of Stride is critical. She is currently the Client Service Manager at Toronto Central Community Care Access Centre. Fluent in Urdu, she has a Hons. bachelor of Science, Masters of public Policy, Administration and Law, Certified Project Management professional, Lean Six Sigma Black Belt. Fatima is a resident of Milton.



Robert Henderson

Robert joined the Stride Board of Directors in September, 2019 and is a member of the Finance Committee. He has 10 years of experience in financial reporting, budgeting, operations and debt/equity financing and is a member of the Chartered Professional accountants of Ontario. Currently, he is the Chief Financial officer at Stealth Monitoring & UCIT Online Security. Robert is a resident of Oakville.



Clark Olson

A member of the Stride Board of Directors since June 2015, Clark is currently teaching at Sheridan’s College’s Human Resources Certification Program.  Clark’s broad experience base includes senior leadership roles in Operations, Organizational behaviour, Training and Development, and Recruitment and Selection in: Government Ministries, Canadian International Development Agency, Hydro, Financial Agencies and Transfer Payment Agencies. He volunteers with local sports clubs and teams and has undergraduate degrees from Wilfrid Laurier University and Sheridan College. He is a resident of Burlington.




Catherine McKeown

Catherine joined the Stride Board of Directors in June 2019. She has 20 years of experience in setting HR strategy, coaching and mentoring executive teams, leading change, talent management strategies, elevation business performance, constructing and leading global and national high performance teams. She has over 20 years working in executive leadership building and leading Human resources teams in multi site manufacturing and service based organizations in automotive and food manufacturing sectors. She is currently the Chief People Officer at Hammond Power Solutions. She is a certified Human Resources Leader. Her education background includes: Bachelors of Business Administration from York University; Certificate in Strategic HR from Dalhousie University. She is a past chair of the HR Committee with the Food and Consumer Products Association. Catherine currently resides in Georgetown.


Zoe Vulic

Zoe joined the Stride Board of Directors in September 2019. She is a Certified Disability Management Professional (CDMP) with 10 years of Human Resource Management in the Public Sector and 20 years of work experience in the Disability Management industry. She is currently the Manager of Employee health, Safety and Wellness for the regional Municipality of Halton. Zoe has a Bachelor Degree in Kinesiology from Southeastern Louisiana University. She is a resident of Burlington. 



Zoe Mitchell

Zoe has been a member of the Stride Board of Directors since June 2020. She has 20 years of experience in corporate retail finance leadership and is currently employed as an employee Engagement consultant using Diversity, equity and Inclusion and Process Improvement to drive engagement. Her degrees and certifications include: Bachelorette of Business administration and Psychology from York University; Lean Six Sigma; Diversity & Inclusion; LGBT+Workplace Inclusion, Unconscious Bias; Leading Change; Managing Diversity. She is a Student Mentor at York University and is a resident of Milton. 


Ann Marie Sullivan

Ann Marie joined the Stride Board of Directors in June 2020. She has over 35 years of expertise in Corporate Information Technology for a large global science-based company and extensive experience in delivering technology solutions enabling business and customer excellence in: supply chain, customer service, human resources, data analytics, finance and collaboration. She has led global teams delivering transformational projects that integrate change management principles and led process enablement teams delivering targeted programs focused on end-to-end projects. She has served as a country information Technology Manager incorporating Six Sigma Champion expertise to enhance quality. She has a diploma in Computer Science and ongoing education in Leadership and Business Development (Sales and marketing. She is a Level 2 community soccer coach, Big Sister, supporter of Blood Services and Meals on Wheels and a marathon runner. She is a resident  of Milton. 


Sarah Lawson

Sarah joined the Stride Board of Directors in June 2020. She is a criminal defence lawyer in the Halton region. Her practise focuses on mental health, addiction and the criminal justice system. She has over 10 years of experience as a lawyer of criminal and family law, including working as a staff lawyer for Legal Aid Ontario and as a federal prosecutor for the Public Prosecution Service of Canada. She volunteers with multiple community organizations and was a former board member of the Welcome Inn Community Centre (2012-2017). She is a current member of the Federal Judicial Advisory Committee, Justices of the Peace Appointments Advisory Committee and the Hamilton Drug Treatment Court Steering Committee. Sarah hols a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from McMaster University and Juris Doctor from Queen’s University. She is a resident of Burlington.


Georges Abdulahad

Georges has been a member of the Stride Board of Directors since June 2020. He is an accomplished account executive with over 25 years of Global IT Consulting services experience in various industry verticals and has a broad range of experience in Business Development, large enterprise accounts management, Strategic Planning and Client Relationship management. He has worked in the telecom industry as a country manager for multi-million dollar account portfolios with accountability for P&L and revenue growth. He has a Computer engineering degree from the University of Waterloo and is a resident of Oakville.



Nancy Lord

Nancy joined the Stride Board of Directors in June 2021. Nancy is currently working as a Vice Principal for the Halton District School Board. She has been working as an Educator for over 15 years with a focus on Educational Leadership, Special Education, French as a Second Language and English as a Second Language. As an educator, she places great emphasis on equity and inclusion and on mental health and wellbeing within the context of learning environments. She has Bachelor’s Degrees in Child and Youth Studies and in Education. Nancy is a resident of the traditional territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation (Burlington).