Driving Progress

WaterStone Foundation’s core mission is to drive progress in the fight against eating disorders by investing donor dollars where the need is greatest and the outcomes most profound. One priority focus is to provide financial assistance to patients who are unable to receive the treatment they need in the public healthcare system and do not have the financial means to access the medical services they need privately. 

In 2016, WaterStone announced it’s Inaugural Awards Program, allocating nearly $170,000 to four public Ontario facilities offering highly specialized and innovative treatment programs to adults and children with eating disorders, and their families. 

Since our announcement: 

  • 17 individuals have been referred to the first integrated intensive treatment in Ontario for individuals who have concurrent eating disorders and substance use problems (University Health Network delivered by Toronto General Hospital and Toronto Western Hospital)
  • 3 individuals are currently residing in transitioning supportive housing; one individual is already on the waiting list (Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) Middlesex, with London Health Science Centre Adult Eating Disorder Program) 
  • 6 additional families were able to join in an existing multi-family group therapy program children and adolescents with eating disorders, doubling the intake of the program (Southlake Regional Health Centre) 
  • Getting ready to launch! The Eating Disorders Program at The Hospital for Sick Children will launch its new Transition Program in 2017 to help adolescents with eating disorders, and their families, transition to adult eating disorder services 

See more information about our partners on the Discover tab on our website. Read how donor dollars are impacting the lives of people, as told to WaterStone Foundation in their own words.

Emma’s story

Emma, now age 28, began to think and feel obsessive about food at the age of 20, when things didn’t seem to be going her way. Micro-managing her food was a means of gaining control over her life.

In 2016, after a four week hospital stay she emerged, physically stronger, but still needing further treatment. Through funding support from WaterStone Foundation, she participated a six week day-program in Bellwood Health Services. 

Today, Emma lives in downtown Toronto with her new Labrador retriever, works full time and has a great network of friends and family for support. 

“I feel as though I have found my authentic self. I have a calmness and courage around food and a sense of purpose that there is something outside my eating disorder. There is a life waiting for me and I have so much I want to do and see and explore.”

Emma Lyle, Toronto, Ontario


Taking on invisible challenges: a passionate advocate for men with eating disorders

At 58, John has been living most of his life with invisible challenges, including an eating disorder. In December 2016, John became one of first residents of a Supportive Transition House launched with funding support from the WaterStone Foundation. With more confidence and food awareness and buoyed by a strong network of peers and colleagues, he is transitioning back to his apartment full-time.

“Living by yourself with an eating disorder is really difficult. I have peers and more support now, thanks to CMHA’s Transition House and WaterStone. That’s partly why I am a passionate advocate for individuals with eating disorders, particularly men. When you talk openly about invisible disabilities and share they become visible. Doors open to support and networking.”

John Dyson, London, Ontario


A story of true grit: determined to get help, Jennifer found funding support from WaterStone

By her early 20s, Jennifer was stuck in an uncontrollable cycle of binge eating and restricting food. Support groups offered solidarity and acceptance, but not enough tools or assistance.

Unfortunately, Alberta does not have any dedicated health services or programs specific for certain eating disorders, only paid health care experts. She was connected with an Eating Disorder Recovery Centre out of province and found out about WaterStone Foundation. Within a week after submitting her application for support, WaterStone’s funding for her stay at a Recovery Centre came through.

“I want to extend heartfelt and everlasting gratitude to both the Waterstone Foundation and Westwind Eating Disorder Recovery Centre. Thank you for helping me learn to believe in myself the same way you believed in me. This new life is a precious gift that I will cherish forever.”

 Jennifer Pothier, Edmonton, Alberta