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Thanks to safe & supported housing a youth begins to paint again!

A youth recently came forward to one of our Housing Workers offering to share some of their art work on our blog. The young person has used a variety of Covenant House services and now has safe, supported housing and is doing well. When the young person was on the streets their painting supplies would often be stolen but now that they have a safe place to live the youth has gotten back into painting.

Our thanks to the young person for sharing their incredible art work!

Youth created art

Youth created art

Youth created art 

Youth creates amazing meal for Rights of Passage Community Dinner

We had an amazing Community Dinner recently at ROP in honor of National Aboriginal Month.

One of our youth who is Aboriginal took the lead in planning, prepping and cooking the meal. The youth also said a few words in their Native language to bless the food and thank the ancestors for the land that they cooked and were eating on. She also explained the history of the 3 Sisters Dish which has beans, squash and corn in it. The youth also whipped up homemade strawberry ice cream for desert. One of our amazing Covenant House cooks contributed homemade bannock to the meal as well.

Everyone said the meal and whole evening was incredible. Congratulations and thank you to the young person for the delicious meal and for sharing their culture with us. 

Community dinner at ROP  

CIBC Wood Gundy Vancouver is Caring for Kids at Covenant House

CIBC Wood Gundy is filling tummies to fuel futures by funding the entire Breakfast Program for over 500 youth who will call Covenant House Vancouver home this year.

Our Crisis Program is a safe and supportive home where youth age 16-24 can live for as long as they need. Meeting youths basic needs is at the heart of this program; food, housing, safety and love. We help youth overcome crisis, focus on their health and wellbeing and progress with their dreams for a brighter future.  CIBC Wood Gundy is filling tummies to fuel futures of every one of these deserving young people.

Thank you to our friends at CIBC Wood Gundy for partnering with Covenant House Vancouver to provide over 15,000 breakfasts to every single youth who lives with us in our Crisis Program this year.

CIBC Wood Gundy Cheque Presentation  

CIBC Wood Gundy Logo

Jennifer shows her resilience during an adventure outing in Whistler

As a youth worker in the Crisis Program, I have always been very aware that the time I spend with my youth is only representative of a small amount of their days, lives, and experiences. This year I had the opportunity to share an amazing experience with youth from both the male and female shelters during a day of activities in Whistler with Zero Ceiling. While there are many things I could say about this amazing outing, there is one particular memory that has stuck with me that I would like to share.

One youth that attended the outing, Jennifer, had been in and out of our Crisis Program a fair amount recently. Jennifer was a youth with many strengths but who also at times struggled with the structure of our program and could become very frustrated during daily interactions with the other youth and staff. The first activity of our day in Whistler was essentially an obstacle course up amongst the tree tops. We were informed by the staff there that we could anticipate some physical challenges in completing this. I joined Jennifer and the other female youth at the head of the group hoping to be there to support her if she struggled during the activity. I recall Jennifer expressing being nervous about what was ahead.

As we moved through the course the physical tasks became more difficult. I began to wonder how Jennifer would react to this fun and challenging, but also very frustrating activity. What I was actually able to see as the activity went on was Jennifer handling every difficult task and every mid-air tumble with laughter and a growing determination to keep moving forward. As for me, I began to struggle and grow frustrated with the physical challenges. Our group reached a point in the course where a decision could be made to either complete the most difficult level of the course, or to return to the ground and walk to the finish line. The other youth and Jennifer contemplated their decision and asked me what mine would be. Despite feeling tired myself, I let Jennifer and the other youth know that I would push forward if they wanted to do the same.

Jennifer and another youth decided that they wanted to keep going, and I joined them. I remember as I struggled through the last few tasks I could hear Jennifer a ways ahead of me shouting encouragement behind her and giving me tips on how she had made it through each task. By the end of the course the youth and I were back on the ground, out of breath, and with huge smiles on our faces. I had never seen Jennifer’s face light up the way it did in that moment, and she told me a couple of times she was very proud of herself. I felt so grateful to share that moment with Jennifer, and to be reminded that the youth have just as much to offer us as we do to offer them as their workers.

 

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