The Youth Haven shelter for youth in Barrie is thanking everyone who purchased a $50 Boxes of Hope leading up to Christmas.
“We are truly grateful and humbled by the support from the community,” said Lucy Gowers, Youth Haven Executive Director. “So many people, whether they live in Barrie, Tottenham, Collingwood and elsewhere in Simcoe County, and even beyond, chose to #bethedifference this holiday season.”
Proceeds from the Boxes of Hope campaign have been used to purchase Christmas gifts, hygiene products, toiletries, bus tokens, items of clothing, food and other needs.
“The kindness, support and generosity give confidence to the youth that there is hope for a better future.”
Gowers says our vision is taking youth experiencing homelessness or at risk of becoming homeless and work with them, challenge them, encourage them, to give them hope, whereby they are living a fulfilled, meaningful and successful life.
While numbers for 2019 are not yet available, Youth Haven assisted over 400 youth in emergency care and outreach across Simcoe County in 2018.
“More and more people are recognizing there is a crisis in our region when it comes to youth homelessness, said Gowers. “One in three people using emergency shelter services in Simcoe County are youth. In 2018, 432 youth who needed a bed at Youth Haven were unable to access one because the shelter was at capacity.”
Youth Haven has 16 emergency beds, 10 for those who identify as male, 6 for those who identify as female, and operates five non-funded beds within the shelter for youth who are considered to be in transitional housing.