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Bragging Rights

Something that I love about Covenant House is that we have lots of different programs and services in order to meet the varying needs of our youth. This provides staff the ability to connect with youth in different phases of their journey.

I recall meeting one particular youth early in my employment with Covenant House who was very proud to claim he held the record for the most stays at our Crisis Shelter. This young person had stayed at our Crisis Shelter about 34 times in five years but was now overage for our Shelter (youth can stay with us up to their 24th birthday). However he stayed connected to us by accessing the Community Support Services and Brief Service (this is a service run by our shelter during the overnight hours) which offers hot soup and pastries to youth not staying in our Shelter.

One night, the youth showed up for some soup and a snack but this time he wasn’t bragging about his multiple stays in Shelter, he was bragging about being sober, how great he felt and how clear headed he was. He also told me he had a new place and had been living there the past 2 months. He was excited to talk about this as it was the longest that he had been independent. The youth went on to say he would miss “Covey” and he was grateful for all the resources he was connected with while he was staying in Shelter. The youth said he still continues to access many of the supports that he would have never known about if it weren’t for Covenant House.

When the youth left that night, I was the one who was so excited to tell my co-workers about my inspiring conversation with this youth and I was happy to pass on the positive news that he was off the streets and doing so well. Sometimes it may take a young person many tries before they leave the streets and I am happy we are here to stand with them as the work towards independence.

road to recovery

Report: The State of Homelessness in Canada 2013

"The State of Homelessness in Canada: 2013 is the first extensive Canadian report card on homelessness. This report examines what we know about homelessness, the historical, social and economic context in which it has emerged, demographic features of the problem, and potential solutions. The State of Homelessness provides a starting point to inform the development of a consistent, evidence-based approach towards ending homelessness." - The Homeless Hub

To download "The State of Homelessness in Canada: 2013" click here.

link to homeless in canada infographic
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Grade 1 class at École Bilingue donate handmade quilt for our youth

The grade 1 class at École Bilingue designed & sewed a quilt with help from teacher Ariella Cepelinski and parents. The students wrote messages on the quilt about what they love.  After discussing what to do with the quilt the class/teacher decided to give it to Covenant House to help brighten the lives of the youth we work with.

The quilt is truly beautiful and will bring so much joy to our young people. Thank you École Bilingue!

qulit created by students for youth

Holly finds family and friends at Covenant House

Recently, I have been working with a young lady called Holly. She has a heart of gold but has grown up in an unstable and unhealthy home environment. She has taken quite a bit of abuse from her family and over the years learned to loathe herself. She did not know any better. The lack of self-esteem was quite evident. She really needed a lot of encouragement around keeping clean, and tidying her room. She would often put other people’s needs ahead of hers because she prefers not to take care of herself because she thinks she doesn’t deserve to be taken care of.

When Holly found her way to the Crisis Shelter, we witnessed an amazing and beautiful response from the other youth towards her. She instantly became everyone’s little sister. A few of the boys became protective and took her under their wing. She later moved into ROP where the love continued, a few people took the time to get to know her, laughed with her and stood up for her. They loved her like family and even though she still struggles with loving herself, she has family here who love her and that is the most important thing in the world.

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