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The Strengths of Young People Who Are Homeless from the Canadian Journal of Community Mental Health

"Researchers examined how young people who are homeless conceptualize and interact with challenging circumstances, adopting a human agency focus rooted in the constructionist model of resilience. Thirty-five young people who were homeless in Ottawa participated in in-depth interviews and/or focus groups. Participants reflected upon their strategic decision-making and described how they solved problems in the midst of adversity, planned for the future, consciously altered their identities, and balanced the costs of engaging in certain behaviours. A constructionist approach to resilience allowed for insight into behaviour that is often seen as risky or outside social norms."  - Shared from The  Homeless  Hub

Click  to  read  The Strengths of Young People Who Are Homeless by    Benjamin S. Roebuck; Maryann M. Roebuck  from the Canadian Journal of Community Mental Health

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There is still time to join Ride for Refuge in support of Covenant House Vancouver

Join Covenant House Vancouver on October 1, 2016 for the Ride for Refuge, a fantastically fun, family-friendly bicycling or walking fundraiser in support of 250+ charities serving displaced, vulnerable, and exploited people! The Vancouver ride is located in Richmond (no hills!), but there are a number of ride locations to choose from.

If you’d like to fundraise and ride for Covenant House (as a team captain or team member) please visit the Ride for Refuge  website.  Don’t forget to choose Covenant House Vancouver as your charity of choice when setting up your team. Don’t have a team but still want to support Covenant House you are welcome to join our team the Covenant House Hubsters or donate to a team riding in support of us:

Covenant House Hubsters
The Wheel Deal
Inaugurated Eschatology

For more information on Covenant House or if you have questions, please contact:

Mark Savard
Jen Moric

Ride for Refuge

Thanking Rize Alliance Properties for weaving vibrant communities

Rize Alliance Properties Ltd. created a charity donation program last year. They invite all of their construction partners to help homeless youth by donating to Covenant House Vancouver. Rize developed a handout with information about our Continuum of Care: Community Support Services, residential Crisis Program and transitional housing program, and did an amazing job advocating for our young people.

With the generous support from thirteen of their clients, they have raised an incredibly impactful amount of funds so far - $4,850!

“There will be additional donations as we continue working with more construction partners.”

Thank you to everyone at Rize Alliance Properties Ltd. for taking your donation program to the next level. We are truly grateful for the time and enthusiasm you have devoted to improving at-risk and homeless youth’s lives. Thank you!

We would also like to thank and recognize Rize’s construction partners for their generous donations this summer and support of Rize’s fundraising initiative:

Macbeth Roofing & Waterproofing
Accurate Aluminum Ltd.
The Steel Guys Fabricating Ltd.

Thank you Rize Alliance Properties for weaving vibrant communities.

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Heather finds the support & love she needs at Covenant House

When Heather first came to us she didn’t seem like the typical youth we usually see. From the outside she looked quite put together - her hair was styled; she wore makeup, and she was dressed in her own unique fashion. She came with several bags of belongings and she was working two jobs in the restaurant business. Heather had been living independently for some time and was attending school at a local college until things took a turn in her life. She had lost her housing due to substance misuse and was put on academic suspension for a year which landed her on the doorstop of Covenant House Vancouver.

Heather’s behavior was often puzzling and without knowing anything initially about her life story, she came across somewhat distant in nature.  The more I got to know her, the more her personality and idiosyncrasies started to make sense.

I learned that Heather had been in and out of foster homes for a good portion of her teenage years and the relationship with her parents was strained, which left her feeling unloved and unsupported. Due to the absence of a caring home, Heather often turned to her friends for love and support which was not healthy for her. However, as she started to trust myself and other youth workers, she began accepting help and started counselling to address her chronic anxiety and drug use.

Towards the end of Heather’s stay in our Crisis Program, it became clear that she had come to Covenant House in need of support and we were successful in connecting her to much-needed resources.  She, in turn, was empowered to make changes towards reaching her goal of independence. Heather pushed back against us when we told her that she was ready to spread her wings and move out on her own. I imagine she felt rejected in a way and may have even been scared of the “what-if’s” that were to come leading up to her move out.

 I often reminded Heather of the progress she had made and told her that Covenant House believed in her and that if things didn’t work out, we would help her get back on her feet. I remember the day that Heather left. It was a bittersweet moment for me as I had worked with her from the start, and I was going to miss our chats, tough conversations and moments together. As we said our good-byes that day, I thanked her for allowing me to be part of her life.  She thanked me back and promised to stay in touch.

After returning from vacation one day, I received a message that she had left for me at the front desk which read: “I miss you!” with a heart drawn next to her message. In that moment, I knew Covenant House Vancouver had made a difference in her life and that all the struggles along the way were well worth it!   

Help kids like Heather today! 


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