Evangeline Danseco

Investigator, CHEO Research Institute

Dr. Evangeline Danseco is a Senior Researcher at the Knowledge Institute on Child and Youth Mental Health and Addictions. She is also a Credentialed Evaluator from the Canadian Evaluation Society. In her local community, she is an ordained interfaith minister and active in efforts that integrate spirituality and mental health. Evangeline is committed to promoting the well-being of children, young people and their families. A recipient of the Fulbright scholarship, Evangeline obtained her master’s degree in developmental psychology from The George Washington University at Washington, DC, and her doctoral degree in Applied Developmental Psychology from the University of Maryland Baltimore County.

Dr. Danseco leads the development, implementation and evaluation of evidence-based mental health programs using organizational learning approaches and implementation science frameworks. Her recent research and evaluation efforts include organizational efforts in addressing racial equity issues in the child and youth mental health and addictions sector, enhancing the implementation of culturally responsive programs, evaluating Ontario’s postsecondary helpline, and developing an evidence-based provincial secure treatment program.

Research Projects

  1. Mental health treatment programs for children and young people in secure settings: A systematic review


    The commonalities across secure treatment programs appear to stem from them being designed around a need for treatment that includes a mental disorder, symptom severity and salience involving significant risk of harm to self and/or others, and a proportionality of the risks and benefits of treatment. Most share a common logic; however, the evidence suggested that this logic may not to lead to sustained outcomes. Policymakers, service providers, and researchers could use the offered recommendations to ensure the provision of high-quality secure treatment programming to children and young people with serious and complex mental health needs.

  2. Evaluating the sector-wide implementation of virtual child and youth mental health services in response to the COVID-19 pandemic: Perspectives from service providers, agency leaders and clients


    Virtual care, the use of internet and related technology to deliver mental health services, has the potential to improve access (Comer & Myers, 2016), efficacy and empowerment, and reduce costs (Leblanc et al., 2019). In recent years, service providers in Ontario's child and youth mental health sector have been exploring how best to integrate virtual care options into service delivery. The emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated these efforts. To continue to meet the needs of children, youth, and families during the pandemic, most service-providing agencies rapidly shifted to deliver virtual care. Prior to the pandemic, efforts were already underway to support the implementation of virtual care across Canada (Lal, 2019). The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) developed a virtual care/e-mental health toolkit which included frameworks for staff training and evaluation of various digital technologies (McGrath et al., 2018). In Ontario, psychiatric services, specialist consultations and training events are delivered to those in remote locations through the Ontario Telemedicine Network (OTN) (Serhal et al., 2017). Similarly, the Project Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes (Project ECHO) focusing on child and youth mental health (CYMH) in Ontario promotes knowledge-sharing between primary care physicians and clinicians using a virtual platform (Serhal et al., 2018). Both services are funded by the government of Ontario. Online psychotherapy based on cognitive behavior therapy videos combined with coaching supports has been recently launched and funded by the government for youth ages 15 to 18 years (https://bouncebackontario.ca/).