Many of the young people living on the streets of Vancouver experience mental health concerns that are often left undiagnosed, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and borderline personality disorder. Some young people cope by turning to substance use.
British Columbia has been amid a public health emergency as a result of the increasing deaths due to opioids. Since the public health emergency was declared in 2016, BC has consistently reported the highest overdose death rate of any Canadian province. The young people, our staff, and our community are feeling the impact.
How Covenant House Vancouver Helps
Covenant House Vancouver offers young people an opportunity to address any counselling and psychiatric needs they may have. When it becomes apparent that a young person is struggling with mental health or addiction issues, a Social Worker on our Case Management Team refers them to one of our in-house Registered Clinical Counsellors. Through a trusting, confidential relationship, the youth and their clinical counsellor will determine what type of support is best for them.
The youth’s therapy may involve one-to-one counselling, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT), art therapy, referral to a psychiatrist, referral to a treatment centre, or a combination of services.
Covenant House Vancouver has a relationship with the Foundry and will often refer young people to their services as well. The Foundry provides access for youth ages 12 – 24 to counsellors and doctors, from occupational therapists to income assistance specialists.
How You Can Help
On Thursday, February 16, Covenant House Vancouver will host Sleep Out: Champions Edition. This event will raise funds to support the mental health and addiction programs at CHV.
Contact the Sleep Out Team if you would like more information about how you can get involved.