Know us as a resource to youth and their families in Scarborough and Toronto as a whole.
During the year that ended on March 31, 2017, over 8,000 youth, aged 12 to 24, and their families received service from our organization.
They came to us seeking a wide range of support for their emotional well-being, mental health, and intellectual development. In response, we delivered over 100,000 service encounters with them.
As a result, those youth are now developing their strengths, building their life skills, and going after more promising, exciting futures. Moreover, they connect more positively now with caring adults on what they still want to learn.
Their success is what drives us to want to serve even more youth and families. For more on our record of service and results, read our 2016-17 annual report HERE.
Know us as a long-time community builder.
YouthLink began as The Big Sister Association of Toronto in 1914. With time we outgrew the original name: in the 1970s we became Huntley Youth Services and, later, YouthLink.
Whatever our name, we’ve worked hard to help build our city and country to be youth-friendlier. Take a quick look HERE to see how much of a difference we’ve made.
Know us as a change agent for Scarborough youth and their families.
We at YouthLink are not resting on our past successes. There is much change still needed to strengthen Scarborough for youth and their families to thrive.
Above all else we imagine a strong Scarborough where all youth and their families are thriving.
Together with our vision is this general statement about what we do. We join with youth, families and partners to highlight and develop strengths, aspirations and positive actions that improve the health and well-being of all who live, work, study and play in our community.
As we go about our work, we are guided by the following values. They help us to come together in the most fulfilling ways.
Leadership. Our actions model what we expect of ourselves as well as our co-workers, volunteers and clients. We aim to bring out the best in each other through strong relationships too. We also seek to show our professional ethics in what we do and the decisions we make.
Humanity. We are considerate of all people, including their backgrounds, abilities, skills, and viewpoints. Along with that we include everyone and celebrate individual differences. Our actions show us to be empathetic, of goodwill and honest as well.
Innovation. We are flexible and willing to change in order to adapt to our work and community. Moreover we are courageous in developing service initiatives for improving the well-being of our young people and their families.
Respect. We value all people for who they are and for their knowledge, skills and experiences. Furthermore we interact respectfully and fairly with all the people we serve and work with. We also encourage the same in return.
Excellence. We are competent and accountable in our work. To every situation we strive to bring clear judgment, thinking and reasoning. We also continually seek to accomplish all tasks to the best of our abilities and resources.
Our strategic priorities to 2019
- Maintain visible, quality, youth and family-centred services in Scarborough.
- Collaborate and partner for collective impact.
- Develop the organization for enhanced service capacity.
- Engage the community.
- Help youth transition to meaning employment, education and stable housing.
- Excel in governance.
Know us as a local employer, a purchaser of goods and services, and a neighbour.
So today our staff numbers 70+. Among them are social workers, counsellors, child and youth workers, and youth peer educators. Many are full-time employees, some work part-time. Most work days while some work nights. All are professional, experienced and dedicated.
Our annual budget exceeds $6M, which also speaks to our length of service. We earn these funds through government contracts, foundation grants, individual donations and corporate sponsorships. We spend all that we earn, mostly on salaries, benefits and on the maintenance and operation of our 7 facilities at a high standard.
Speaking of high standards, YouthLink is currently accredited by the Canadian Centre for Accreditation. What that means to you is that a national organization that’s in the know has determined that our work today represents the best practices in youth mental health. Further, that we are taking the necessary steps to continue to improve on that quality. For more information on this Centre, click HERE.
Finally, YouthLink is also a neighbour to homes and businesses in a number of parts of Scarborough. We do our best to participate in community events, and to make ourselves available to our neighbours as they wish.
Know us as a recognized community partner.
Many people come to us through word of mouth. In addition, other organizations and professionals send their clients to us. Importantly, we’re told the reason for these referrals is that we have a lot to offer young people and their families. We’re proud of that. However, sometimes we don’t have the service people need. In that case, we too will refer them to one of our reputable partners.
Also connected to our community standing, YouthLink is a registered Canadian charity and an anchor agency of the United Way of Toronto and York Region. For the latest information on our charitable status click HERE.