Jun 28, 2011

Youth Services Bureau recognizes dedication to improving the lives of at-risk youth

At its 51st annual general meeting tomorrow, the Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa will recognize both individuals and agencies that have demonstrated their commitment to improving the lives of at-risk youth in Ottawa.

Three agencies that have worked in partnership with YSB to improve the well-being of young people will be recognized:

  • The Youville Centre, which works with young single parents and partners with YSB in an employment program for young parents;
  • The Ottawa Food Bank, which helps YSB improve access to food for young people in shelters and supportive housing; and
  • Crime Prevention Ottawa, which works with YSB in a range of youth justice initiatives.

YSB will also be thanking long-serving staff members, including five YSB staff members who have served 30 years and 25 years with the agency.

“For over half a century, YSB has been turning around lives of young people by providing a safe, non-judgmental environment and effective programs,” said Joanne Lowe, executive director of YSB.  “We’ve succeeded thanks to smart and dedicated people—our professional staff who have stayed with us for the long haul, and dozens of partner agencies that have joined forces with us to make a difference.”

“YSB is change—nothing stays the same at YSB, because we evolve with the needs of the clients that we serve and the community that we serve,” said Maureen Davidson, who joined YSB 30 years ago as a youth worker in a residential program, and went on to work in aftercare, street outreach and AIDS education, and housing programs for homeless youth.

Ms. Davidson is now the coordinator of YSB’s Youth and Family Counselling services and co-coordinator of its Youth Mental Health Walk-In Clinic. These services have worked with thousands of young people between the ages of 12 to 20, their families, and their communities to address psychological and social issues.

Ruth Dulmage, the coordinator of YSB's long-term housing program and health clinic for street-involved youth, also joined YSB in 1981 and helped develop YSB's youth-centred approach, as well as policies recognizing the special needs of young women and LGBTQ youth.

Starting as an outreach worker in some of Ottawa’s most disadvantaged neighbourhoods, Ms. Dulmage helped develop YSB’s child, youth and family counselling services, as well as programs for children with behavioural issues, and children who had witnessed abuse of women (a first in Canada).

“YSB was making a difference and we knew it…we experienced it every day,” she said about her three decades working with young people.

YSB is one of the most comprehensive youth social service agencies in Ottawa serving between 2,500 and 3,000 youth per month in the areas of mental health, safe and stable housing, youth employment, and youth justice.


For details of the YSB Annual General Meeting on June 29: click here

Media Contact:

Eva Schacherl
Director of Communications                            
Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa

Cell.: 613-266-5104

Derek Antoine
Communications Advisor
Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa
Cell.: 613-277-7703