Canada’s Largest Psychedelic Industry Conference To Coincide With Mental Health Awareness Week in May 2021

CATALYST Presents Foundation (“CATALYST”), an Alberta-based not-for-profit event company focused on advancing the psychedelic medicine movement in Canada, announced the second annual CATALYST Summit 2021, Canada’s largest conference in the psychedelic medicine arena.

CALGARY, Mar 2, 2021 – CATALYST Presents Foundation (“CATALYST”), an Alberta-based not-for-profit event company focused on advancing the psychedelic medicine movement in Canada, announced the second annual CATALYST Summit 2021, Canada’s largest conference in the psychedelic medicine arena. Tickets for the influential event went on sale this week and are expected to be in strong demand with psychedelics becoming a hot topic in mental health.

Partnering with the Canadian Psychedelic Association (“CPA”), CATALYST Summit 2021 will bring together Canada’s burgeoning psychedelic medicine industry and features a globally recognized lineup of speakers, researchers and personalities who will participate in the 3-day event in May 2021, which will be hosted entirely online. Some of the leading players in Canada’s psychedelic movement are involved as sponsors, including ATMA Journey Centers, one of the event’s presenting sponsors and Mind Cure Health as the Founding Sponsor of the event.  

Featured prominently during Mental Health Awareness Week in Canada, the event is scheduled to take place Friday, May 7th through until Sunday, May 9th, 2021.  It will be facilitated entirely online to provide worldwide access to the innovative and compelling research and science that is impacting every area of mental health.

Confirmed CATALYST Summit 2021 speakers to date include:

  • Michael Pollan, author of the #1 New York Times Best-Selling Book on psychedelics, “How To Change Your Mind“. Pollan is internationally recognized as one of the top voices in the current psychedelic renaissance, and his book is largely regarded as one of the most important works to bring psychedelics into the mainstream conversation since its publication in 2018;
  • Paul Stamets, internationally renowned authority on fungi and mushrooms. According to Linda Baker from Salon.com: “Once you’ve heard ‘renaissance mycologist’ Paul Stamets talk about mushrooms, you’ll never look at the world – not to mention your backyard – in the same way again.”;
  • Dr. Rick Doblin, Founder and Executive Director of MAPS (Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies), and widely recognized as a leader of the current movement toward medical acceptance of psychedelics in treating mental health disorders;
  • Dr. Janis Phelps, Founder and Director, CIIS Center for Psychedelic Therapies and Research;
  • Dr. Ben Sessa, Author and Chief Medical Officer at Awakn Life Sciences Inc.;
  • Dr. Anthony Bossis, Clinical Psychologist and Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at New York University School of Medicine;
  • Dr. Julie Holland, Psychiatrist specializing in pharmacology with a private practice in New York City;
  • Dr. Raquel Bennett, Psychiatrist specializing in Ketamine Therapy and founder of Kriya Institute and Kriya Conference;
  • Dr. David E. Nichols, Pharmacologist and Medicinal Chemist; and
  • Dr. Erika Dyck, Professor and Canada Research Chair in the History of Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan.

Over 40 speakers have already been confirmed and a current list of all speakers and details about the event are available at the official event website located at www.CatalystPresents.ca.

Trevor Millar, Board Member of the CPA said: “Partnering with CATAYLST helps the CPA in the efforts we are making to unite Canada’s psychedelic community of therapists, passionate supporters, businesses, and medical professionals. Our work towards advocacy, policy change, and ensuring diverse voices are heard will be given an amplified platform at CATALYST. We are optimistic that this movement is just beginning and are thrilled to play a role in helping CATALYST reach even more people with the news of these powerful therapeutic modalities.” 

According to Greg HabstrittExecutive Director of CATALYST Presents: “Over three years ago, the vision for CATALYST was born out of a group of Albertans originally led by David Harder and Tarzie McLean with a passion to see psychedelic medicines find respect and widespread legal access for those who could find healing through their intentional use.  Our inaugural psychedelics conference was scheduled for May of 2020, just as the COVID-19 pandemic took grip and resulting in having to take the event online.  Even through this adversity, we saw last year’s event become a success and lay the foundation for CATALYST Summit to become the national industry voice that it is today.”

He explained that the overwhelming interest and support the event received in 2020 validated how much need there was for a world-class psychedelic conference in Canada. CATALYST Summit 2021 expands on that vision and will provide information and education on a full range of topics that include psychedelic therapy, spirituality and current research and science.

The rise of interest in psychedelics in Canada over the last few years has been significant, due to a growing body of science-based data showing the compelling potential of psychedelics to provide relief to a wide range of mental health and psychological conditions.  At a time when mental health conditions are skyrocketing in the shadow of COVID-19, the event will provide a lens through which mental health and wellness can be reimagined.

In August 2020, Health Canada began providing exemptions to individual Canadians facing terminal illnesses to legally undergo psychedelic-assisted therapy, which opened the door to psychedelic medicine in Canada.

This watershed moment of legal exemptions being granted for the first time in more than 40 years by Health Canada brought significant attention and optimism to the future of psychedelic medicine.  It also ushered in a massive growth of non-profit, public and private companies working to be in a position when more broad-based legalization of psychedelics comes to pass in Canada.

While plans are still in place for an in-person conference in Calgary in the fall of 2021, the impact of COVID-19 has required once again the expansion of the innovative online approach to hosting a national industry conference.  The organization says it is prepared to ensure that attendees are afforded a highly interactive and engaging experience, allowing them to gai access to one of the most comprehensive gatherings of psychedelic research and wisdom in the world.

Habstritt added: “This event will focus on the numerous studies, protocols and practices from global voices and authorities who are discovering innovative ways of treating those suffering from anxiety, depression, PTSD, addictions and more.  We feel there is no better time than now to shine a bright light on psychedelics and psychedelic-assisted therapy to increase awareness and understanding of this promising new direction. CATALYST Summit will be critical in bringing historical methods, government and commerce together to envision how psychedelic medicine will play a pivotal role in Canada’s mental health system.”

Tickets and more information about CATALYST Summit 2021 are available on the official event website at www.CatalystPresents.ca.

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