Our team at Threshold wants to send our deepest condolences to the Jones’ family. Gerry Howell Jones was one of the founders of Threshold Housing and it would be an understatement to mention the significant impact he had here. We will continue our work with Gerry in our thoughts.
Join Threshold for a livestreamed conversation on youth harm reduction with Guy Felicella, B. C’s Representative for Children and Youth Dr. Jennifer Charlesworth, Dr. Bernie Pauly, and more.
On June 16th, 2022, Threshold Housing society is hosting a keynote speaking event and panel discussion. We have invited experts, people with lived experience, and researchers to help share knowledge, reduce stigma, and inform discourse on youth harm reduction practices. The goal of the event is to highlight harm reduction as a strategy to save lives and enable progress toward healing and recovery.
Harm reduction is an approach or strategy aimed at reducing the risks and harmful effects associated with substance use for the individual, the community and society as a whole. It is deemed a realistic, pragmatic, humane and successful approach to addressing issues of substance use. Such interventions aim to heal the person as a whole. Different people need different supports and solutions. The key here is to work with a person where they are at, and to give them choices and options.
NIȽ TU,O Child and Family Services Society (NIȽ TU,O) has partnered with Threshold Housing Society (THS) to expand safe housing and support services for local Coast Salish youth, who are affiliated with NIȽ TU,O, and are at-risk of experiencing homelessness.
NIȽ TU,O is a Coast Salish run agency working to strengthen families and keep kids in the Seven member Coast Salish communities they serve. THS works to prevent homelessness by providing safe housing, support services, and community to at-risk youth, aged 15-24 years old.
Through this partnership, THS will now have NIȽ TU,O’s support in the creation of culturally inclusive spaces that will help provide safe housing, support services, and community to Indigenous youth living in and around the Greater Victoria area.
The need for increased support for Coast Salish youth is critical. Currently, THS serves an over-representation of Indigenous youth. More than 30% of youth THS serve identify as Indigenous, which can be directly linked to the overrepresentation of Indigenous youth in government care. Threshold and NIȽ TU,O both share the understanding the escalated experiences of Indigenous youth homelessness can be attributed to the lived experiences of colonialism, dispossession, and intergenerational trauma.
From April, 2022 to June 30th, 2022, Threshold Housing Society is bringing awareness to the ongoing issue of youth aging out of government care through an online campaign: Ready or Not Aging out of Care. In British Columbia, when a youth in government care turns 19 years old they often lose access to essential support services, such as their housing, social worker, mental health services, and financial support. Youth age out of care, whether they are ready or not – at an age that is often already challenging and stressful. This often leads to youth aging out of care without adequate support to transition to adulthood. Aging out of care without appropriate supports in place is often cited as a major risk factor contributing to future experiences of homelessness in adulthood and increased risk to illness, injury, assault, substance dependence, mental health issues, and death. In 2018, the B.C. Coroners Service report found youth leaving government care died at five times the rate of the general population of young people in British Columbia. In our community, there is an over representation of Indigenous people experiencing homelessness, which can be directly linked to the over representation of Indigenous youth in government care. This is an outcome resulting from the ongoing legacy of colonialism.
Due to the unprecedented times, we are living in, youth in BC have been granted a reprieve from aging out of care. This is an encouraging step in the right direction. More recently, hopeful changes have been announced towards impactful changes for youth in care. We acknowledge these actions by the government, however, there is still important work to be done to continue to strengthen supports for youth aging out of care.
“The in-house counselling program is new at Threshold and sometimes it’s hard to believe that we didn’t offer this service earlier! I meet for one-on-one counselling sessions with several youth to work together on their mental well-being and goals related to topics such as family history, relational stress, school and career anxiety, grief and loss, isolation, complex trauma, and more. It is a joy and an honour for me to witness the youth grow and heal. In addition, I facilitate a psychoeducational support group every week, Building Healthy/ier Relationships, to help youth enhance their knowledge and skills to, well, build healthy/ier relationships. Each session has a different focus, such as relationship beliefs, communication, boundaries, and power dynamics. We have a lot of fun as we learn together! Overall, the counselling program is an invaluable aspect of Threshold’s wraparound service model, and I am so grateful that I get to fulfill it.” –
Macayla Yan aka Threshold’s in House Clinical Counsellor
*Special Announcement* Our 12 days of Silk Road tea gift boxes are back and…. We are so excited to announce that this year you can go into any of the 7 CountryGrocer locations on Vancouver Island to purchase your tea box!!! All proceeds will be coming to Threshold Housing and will help us Shine a Light on Youth Homelessness . We are honoured to be partnering with the amazing team at CountryGrocer and want to give them a massive shoutout for helping us support the youth we serve.
It’s that time! Threshold Housing is Shining a Light on Youth Homelessness from November 1st, 2021 to December 31st, 2021 We believe that every youth in our community deserves a safe place to call home — to find sanctuary and acceptance. Your support can help provide at-risk youth with a safe home and a strong support network that can change the trajectory of their life, and even have a generational impact on their family. By supporting at-risk youth, you are helping prevent future adult homelessness. During this time, we will be raising funds to help us continue to provide safe homes and brighter futures to at-risk youth and raise awareness about youth homelessness.
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