For the past 18 months Our House Youth Wellness Centre has been working hard to transform the much-used youth centre, both inside and out.
And while the bones of the centre have been under construction, so have some of the programs the centre offers youth in the community.
An open house will be held on Nov. 14, from 2-6 p.m., at the 54 King St. location to tell the community all about it.
“We are excited to show off our centre, spread the word about our great youth work and create new potential partnerships,” says Jennifer Huskilson, director for the centre.
She says there are a few programs in particular they’ve been looking forward to sharing with the community.
The Boyz Redefining Boyz Program highlights male youth.
“We often focus on girls and how hard it can be for them growing up in this society ignoring the pressures and challenges facing our boys,” says Huskilson.
The program was developed in recognition of these unique challenges to help boys as they develop their identities in today’s culture, she says. The program allows boys to get to together to talk about pressures they face.
Another new program is the Paint ‘n Chat created to address the unique needs of young women and men between the ages of 15 and 18.
“It encourages youth to explore their true selves by giving them a safe space, encouragement, structure and support to discuss and share their thoughts,” says Huskilson.
Topics like consent, self respect and exploring healthy relationships are discussed on a weekly basis.
“These topics will be tied into weekly group art lessons to help foster a relationship between emotions and art,” says Huskilson. The art that is created at the end will represent their journey together.
The program was funded by the Nova Scotia Department of Community Services.
Huskilson says the open house will allow parents to come and see all the exciting programs and services being offered through Our House Youth Wellness Centre and also to meet the staff.
“Come learn about what we offer, what are our barriers and areas of need,” says Huskilson.
Did you know?
Our House Youth Wellness Centre has a list of crisis supports that are always needed to help in their programing that includes free meals, clothing and personal items as well as food items for youth. They are in need of personal items like pads, tampons, body wash, toothpaste and winter clothing.