NAVIGATION OF SUPPORT AND SERVICES
1) Establish a complex case protocol and Integrated Service Delivery team for youth at risk of homelessness of those who are homeless. The team would ensure that access is simple, efficient and effective for homeless youth. Policy contradictions would be alleviated.
HOMELESS NO MORE- HOUSING
2) Emergency shelter- Youth under 19 years of age need an age appropriate safe options for shelter- Further develop a plan with Inn From The Cold for a effective partnership approach to youth that need emergency shelter; establish the SAFE Couch Surfing Network; and access the emergency shelter resources of Child Welfare.
3) Secure and Establish increased options for housing for youth that include: a transitional housing program for young women, 16- 21 years of age; pursue the supports required to secure a rapid re-housing approach; research the possibilities of a supervised apartment program in partnership with NSCC & Acadia University; evaluate and more effectively partner with existing resources through NS Housing Authority, Disability Support Program, Child Welfare, Income Assistance, and Community Outreach Program (NS Health); and recruit, screen and support Host homes.
EDUCATION & WORK
4) Work closely with the Annapolis Valley School Board to re-engage students that have been non-attenders due to the stresses of family breakdown and homelessness. Establish and link all youth community outreach workers at each school, INCLUDING Schools Plus. Develop consistent best practises for all youth outreach initiatives.
5) A working group to be established that ensures that current work training/employment prep programs are hands on and have more immediate application for youth that have not completed grade 12. Initiate the discussion that each NS Works Office would have an employment practitioner that is a specialist for youth. Establish a youth-adult entrepreneur think tank to mobilize youth employment and small business. Increase the effectiveness of Employment training programs to be youth centred and experiential.
6) Build belonging- Develop an inclusion policy and practise for each community to aid the at risk and marginalized youth. Each Community could serve their members by hearing the voice for each of the marginalized groups and communicating back with action that, “you matter!” See community forums that could begin a process of increasing the capacity of each community to establish a safe space for youth to gather and build a network of host homes.
7) Recreation access- Programs and subsidies exist but there are still barriers. Increase the capacity for community recreation programs to remove all barriers that all youth have options for being active and engaged. The very popular S.M.I.L.E. program at Acadia University can be adapted for children, youth, and families that need the connection and accompaniment to go into a new place or attend a new program.
Stats that are specific to the Valley- Home Secure