Over The Bridge is a lifeline for the music industry’s long-term success. Using the music industry as a conduit, OTB assists industry members, who are at their most vulnerable, cultivate and achieve long-term mental health and addiction recovery goals.
We believe in helping those who inspire change around the world. An inspirational, positive song lyric, tweet, or quote to the press can change someone’s life. The music industry has the rare ability to influence millions of people, all over the world, in just a split second. OTB believes that by influencing the influencers (i.e., members of the music industry), we can create a positive impact — not just in our industry, but for people around the world.
Since August 2017, Over The Bridge has trained, educated and/or emotionally supported over 2,000 music industry members.
In an industry where maintaining good mental health is challenging, and substance abuse is normalized and glorified, it is our goal to help those in need cross the bridge over troubled waters.
Through personal experiences, research evidence, and testimonies from music industry colleagues, Over The Bridge founding partners, Ace Piva and Cole Smith, were inspired to serve the industry they love. Recognizing the absence of mental health and addiction recovery education, harm reduction training, and long-term support services dedicated to the music industry, Ace determined it was time to establish programs and services that make a difference to the people in and behind the spotlight.
Piva says, “At the beginning of August 2017, Over The Bridge was originally created as a resource for mental health and addictions recovery, and as a peer-to-peer Facebook support group for musicians, road crews, technicians, managers, agents, promoters, record labels, live music venue and festival workers. However, early on it became quite clear that there was little to no mental wellness and addiction recovery programs or services in place for the music industry that addressed these important life and career threatening personal issues”.
Smith continues, “Conversations, suggestions, and encouragement, made by early members of the Over The Bridge community asked us to do more. By the end of August 2017, Over The Bridge became an incorporated non-profit organization”.
Bringing together a synergetic collective from the mental health, addictions recovery, and music industries, our first Board of Directors was established in early 2019. In 2021, our new Board includes new members with an expanded set of skills, experiences and perspectives, and the organization continues to evolve and mature.
Based in Toronto, Ontario, Over The Bridge develops mental health and addiction recovery awareness, education, training programs, and support services. Over The Bridge has partnered with professional and peer-to-peer services to aid, assist, and support people in the music industry.
Over The Bridge understands that mental health and addiction can affect anyone, and particularly those who dedicate their life to music. By devoting time, passion, and investment to education, training programs, and long-term support services, Over The Bridge empowers individuals in music to seek and receive help during troubled times, and to support not only the longevity of their music career but also the quality of their life.