Tanner Steffler Foundation aids in school board position - June 21, 2018
BY SHAWN LOUGHLIN
The Tanner Steffler Foundation has now had a direct impact on the mental health landscape of Huron County with the creation of a pilot project with two local school boards.
Steffler’s parents John and Heather founded the organization in the wake of their son’s overdose death and have since held several events aimed at dismantling the stigma surrounding mental health and lobbying for improved access to services in Huron County.
This pilot project has been in the works since last November. It is the first practical change the foundation has been able to affect since its founding. The project calls for the hiring of a mental health and wellness coach who would work jointly for both the Avon Maitland and Huron-Perth Catholic District School Boards.
The organization has committed to providing monetary and high-level support to the project that will place the new coach in Clinton for work at both St. Anne’s Catholic and Central Huron Secondary Schools for the 2018/2019 school year. The job listing was officially released by the two school boards in early June and the applicants need to respond by Friday, June 22.
The foundation has thanked all of those who have attended events or donated in recent months, stating that without their support, the ability to assist in the creation of the pilot project wouldn’t have been possible.
“Your donations have a direct impact on our community,” the post reads. “Because of you, we have been able to provide monetary support to a joint pilot project between the Huron-Perth Catholic District School Board and Avon Maitland District School Board.”
In an interview with The Citizen, John Steffler said that while he and Heather are happy at the progress being made, the goal is still to have a full-time mental health and wellness counsellor in every high school in Huron County. He said the foundation also hopes to help provide aid in area public schools as well.
To keep Tanner’s love of music alive, the foundation will be hosting its first annual Six-String Music Fest on Saturday, July 21. The festival will take place at the Seaforth Agriplex and consists of two events.
Six-String Summerfest is free for the whole family and will take place between 12-4 p.m. will inflatables, axe-throwing, a children’s dime sale, food trucks and four hours of music by local youth.
The Six-String Music Fest will then begin at 4 p.m. with live music, a silent auction, opening act Ray Lyell and the Storm and headlined by Canada’s top Tragically Hip tribute band, Practically Hip.
For more information on the foundation, visit its website at
tannerstefflerfoundation.com or find it on any of the social networks.