Mental Health Counselling

At birth, we were not provided with an operations manual for our mind, which explains why so many of us are affected by negative and interrupting thoughts. Science has proven that with only several hours of instruction, it is possible to learn the basic skills to manage our thinking, and with 15 minutes of daily practice, to become the master of our own mind.

We offer common sense strategies to increase one’s self-awareness and management of your thinking. Therapeutic interventions include cognitive behavioural therapy, mindfulness meditation, motivational interviewing and insight mediation to challenge the symptoms of depression, anxiety, delusional disorders (bipolar and schizophrenia) and personality disorders.

There are no magic fixes, but we offer practical solution-focused approaches.


We can meet in one of our offices throughout Niagara or on Skype. Appointment times are flexible (weekdays and weeknights).

Details about Skype counselling are listed on a separate tab. Additional questions can be answered on the telephone or in person.


We believe that the goals you set for yourself are more likely to occur when you follow through with the homework assignments, practice self-compassion, acceptance of past actions and demonstrate a willingness to make changes that are in your own best interests. The work we do together does not have to be limited to the traditional counselling model. As advocates, we stand with you, coach you and offer tools to overcome the challenges that you are struggling with. We may do some of the following.

  • Prepare a summary of symptoms, side effects, allergies, etcetera, to be shared with your medical doctor and if appropriate, we may accompany you to a medical appointment
  • Initiate applications and claims for entitlements and/or pensions
  • Write letters to advocate for services that have been previously denied

Conversations we might have, that will help you and your family to develop and improve your skill sets, enhance your rapport and relationships may include:

  1. Education regarding the mental illnesses (similarities and differences in symptomology, medication and psychological treatments)
  2. Trustworthy internet sites
  3. Empathetic and active communication skills
  4. Recovery Action Plans for individuals and the family as inspired by Recovery Movement Writers
  5. Self-care: compassion fatigue; mindfulness relaxation exercises; theory and motivation
  6. Stages of Change Theory & recognizing obstacles
  7. Concurrent Disorder (mental illness and substance abuse)
  8. Stress Vulnerability Model of psychiatric illness & how this knowledge benefits all family members
  9. Coping strategies for the family and the ill person
  10. Signs of relapse
  11. Community resources & Meaningful activity
  12. Non-violent crisis intervention
  13. Suicide intervention
  14. Impact of the illness, prognosis and quality of life for all members of the family
  15. Personal responsibility
  16. Treatment options
  17. Advocacy skills
  18. Motivational interviewing


Fee Schedule – Counselling

(session are 50 minutes)

$100 per session in one of our offices.


If an appointment must be changed, please call with at least 24 hours notice. Late cancellations or no-shows will be charged at the full rate.

If you have a benefit plan that reimburses for the RSW designation, please check your annual limits.

Counselling services are HST exempt and can be included in your Canada Revenue Agency tax return as a health care expense.

Capacity Assessment and Mediation Services are charged at a rate of $150 per hour.

Other work (teaching, group facilitation of suicide awareness and mental health first aid and CISD) are varied rates.


About Dan Silver

Since 1996, Dan has practiced as a mental health educator, counsellor and advocate offering common sense solution focused treatment to assist with recovery from depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorders and schizophrenia. Believing that recovery happens more often than most people are aware, clients are encouraged to embrace their potential and achieve balance in their lives.

As a registered social worker and teacher, Dan emphasizes three underlying themes in his group and individual practice.

1) Self-care for all 

2) Understanding the symptoms and

3) Navigating the health care system to get the best services available for you and your family.

Early in his career Dan worked with homeless mentally ill adults on the streets, in the Niagara Detention Centre, local crisis services and developed the curricula for several group programs. Aside from clinical work, Dan brings experience from his years as Executive Director of Gateway Residential and Community Support Services, Manager of Housing Operations for social housing at the Niagara Region and Executive Director of the Family Mental Health Support Network of Niagara.

With degrees in social work, management and education, Dan blends the clinical with common sense as he and his clients explore and discover solutions to develop individual and family recovery plans.

By way of providing education to larger groups, Dan brings experience with a variety of audiences. As a provincial board member of the Ontario Association of Social Workers, coordination of the annual conferences in Niagara was his responsibility. As Executive Director of Gateway and Operations Manager of Regional Housing, he was responsible for the planning and delivery of quarterly training meetings to fifty or more staff. As a facilitator of family mental health education groups, he has been tailoring public talks to increasingly sophisticated audiences, necessitating that he remain ahead of the curve on issues and trends.

Dan’s Personal Statement

My choice to work with families affected by mental health issues is very personal. In 1973, my brother was diagnosed with schizophrenia and in 1993 he died. As a child I saw his pain and that of my parents, two other brothers and extended family. At that time the mental health system was poorly equipped to help Jonathan while offering nothing to the families. There are no magic fixes but I offer practical solution-focused approaches to improve your advocacy skills, knowledge of the health care system and heighten your own self-care skills. I am a passionate advocate offering integrity of character and hope.
People do recover from mental illness more often than believed.

Dan Silver,
Psychotherapist, Registered Social Worker, M.S.Ed, Family and Elder Mediator, Capacity Assessor designated under the Substitute Decisions Act, 1992