Youth in the Sea to Sky corridor are affected by mental health challenges at rates higher than the provincial average. 1 in 5 youths have shared that they need mental health services, and yet almost half of them reported they didn’t know where to go to get help. (source). Provincially, youth experience increased suicide attempts, eating disorders and feelings of isolation (source).
It’s time for a change.
With the opening of Foundry Sea to Sky on Friday March 31, 2023, young people in Squamish now have a safe, welcoming place to access free, age-friendly integrated mental health and substance use support, youth peer support and social services, wellness programs, as well as social and recreational programming. In a uniquely Squamish approach, Foundry Sea to Sky is co-located with the Youth Hub which provides youth with a safe, accessible, and fun place to connect with each other, staff and programs and services.
“This is an incredible space for our community and youth,” says Jaye Russell, Executive Director of Sea to Sky Community Services (SSCS). SSCS operates Foundry Sea to Sky. “This is truly about walking along side youth, working with them to understand their needs, and then partnering with government, community leaders, funders and donors, and key partners to translate those needs into high-quality programs, services, and supports for youth in Squamish in a way that’s accessible for young people.”
During Friday’s celebrations, TD announced a $300,000 gift to Sea to Sky Community Services over three years to support the wellbeing of youth throughout the Sea to Sky corridor. The gift will be used to enrich programming and services for youth, starting with SSCS’s Youth Week from May 1 to 7, 2023.
“We’re so proud to present Sea-to-Sky Communities Services with a $300,000 donation to expand this incredible initiative, which will connect local youth with primary care, mental health and substance use support, as well as many other vital social services,” said Bob Bayntun, TD District Vice President, Northern BC and the Yukon. “Through the TD Ready Commitment, our corporate citizenship platform, we’re investing in solutions that support equitable health outcomes for all and help people feel a sense of belonging in their community. We know the Sea-to-Sky Foundry will make a huge difference in the lives of local youth across the region.”
Sea to Sky Community Services has been working alongside community partners for more than 40 years, investing in people and supporting healthy, resilient communities. With more than 40 programs and services available, SSCS support Sea to Sky residents through all ages and stages of life. SSCS’s Squamish Youth Services and Foundry Sea to Sky provide access to a variety of programs and services for youth ages 12-24 years old.