Youth Services

Returning to the grassroots of our programming, our Youth Services initiative provides a variety of programs for youth, ages 14-25. Our program aims to expand young people’s perspectives on healthy relationships with themselves and with others. Abrigo's youth services includes: information and referral, leadership groups, individual counselling, a school outreach program and our TAG-V program.

Through our Youth Services, individual youth receive counselling services regarding issues that impact their emotional health and well being. Our counsellors assist youth and their families with such issues as parenting challenges, inter-­generational conflict, anxiety, and difficult life transitions.

In collaboration with local schools, Abrigo Centre Staff and volunteers provide in-class workshops to youth on topics relevant to the development of healthy relationships with themselves and others. Topics may include family abuse, bullying, stress and dating violence. Abrigo Centre is dedicated to engaging youth in our community through creating and developing these FREE workshops. With a focus on encouraging healthy relationships and youth leadership, a qualified youth worker will come to your school's classroom and speak with your students.

Funded by a grant by the Canadian Women’s Foundation, Abrigo Centre introduced the Teens Against Gender-Based Violence (TAG-V) project three years ago and is working with local high schools on targeting gender-based violence through anti-abuse and a healthy relationship initiative. Youth leaders receive intensive training focused on preventing violence against women through a gender based analysis and focusing on building healthy and equitable relationships between young women, men, and significant others. Upon finishing the semester, these youth leaders in turn work as ambassadors by bringing their message to their peers (primarily at an annual Youth 2 Youth event) and in local senior elementary schools with the objective of building awareness of woman abuse, dating violence, peer violence, family violence and the development of healthy relationships.

Resources:

Teen Power & Control Wheel

Teen Equality Wheel

Teen Safety Plan

College Student Safety Plan


Frequently Asked Questions

I am a youth and want to get some help, but I don’t want anyone to find out it’s me. What should I do?
You may want to send us an e-mail for starters if you find that you have questions that you would like to ask before deciding whether you want to use our youth counselling services.

You can e-mail us at: info@abrigo.ca

If you want total anonymity (that is, to make sure no one can trace you), you can connect with the Kids Help Phone either by telephone or through their website. They have a ton of information for young people and they do not ask you for your name & address. At Abrigo Centre & at the Kids Help Phone we do not trace calls, we don’t have call display and we don’t track IP addresses.
Kids Help Phone Line: 1-800-668-6868
Website: www.kidshelpphone.ca
I am a teenager with some questions...what can I expect when I call?
When you call Abrigo Centre, a receptionist will answer your call. You can let the receptionist know that you are calling for the first time and that you are a youth who would like to speak with a counsellor. The receptionist will try to find an intake worker to speak with you right away. If an intake worker is already with another client, you can leave a telephone number where you can be reached or if you are not comfortable leaving a telephone number the receptionist can let you know when you can call back.

The intake person asks you for some information on the issue you are calling about and will let you know if we can help you. If we don’t have expertise in the area of your concern, the intake worker will give you the telephone number of a place they believe will be in a better position to help you. If we can help you, the intake worker will at this time ask you for information such as your full name, date of birth, address and a telephone number where you can be reached. If at this stage you are not prepared to provide this information, no stress! You can let the intake worker know that you are not comfortable right now leaving this information and you would first like to meet with the counsellor.
I am teenager seeking help...what does confidentiality mean exactly?
Confidentiality means that counsellors do not discuss the conversations you have with them without your written consent. From time to time it is in your best interest that the counsellor speaks with someone like another professional to help you reach your goals. A counsellor will always ask your permission verbally and in writing before doing this. There are some limits to confidentiality. If you are being physically or sexually hurt by someone and you are under the age of 16, we will get you help with or without your consent. Whether you are under or over 16 years of age if we believe that you are going to hurt yourself or someone else we also need to get you help and will do this with or without your consent.

We will always try to communicate with you first when we need to break confidentiality. You need to understand that it is very important to us to ensure our client’s safety and well-being and that whenever we need to break confidentiality we do it with these objectives in mind.
What is youth counselling?
Counselling is an opportunity to talk about problems. Youth have very challenging lives and it’s sometimes good to speak with someone who can help you figure out what the problems are, express your feelings and help you look at the various options to your problems/concerns. There is no such thing as a small problem. If something is bothering you it’s good to speak with someone who is going to listen, not going to judge you and where you know your conversations are confidential. That’s what counselling is all about.
What type of issues do you usually help youth with?
We assist young people with all of the issues listed below: • Relationship concerns (with family, friends and partners)
• Dealing with abusive people in our lives
• Dealing with being an abusive person and wanting to make changes
• Anger and managing anger
• Handling addiction
• Dealing with peer pressure
• Supporting lesbian/gay/bi/trans youth
• Any other problem a young person may be dealing with and could use some emotional support on that has not been mentioned in the above list!
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