Housing for youth gets a $243,741 boost from SleepOUT fundraiser

OTTAWA, December 1, 2017 —More than 1,000 youth in Ottawa are homeless or unstably housed. Today, thanks to the efforts of about 600 people from across Ottawa, they are one step closer to finding safe, stable housing. Youth and community leaders slept out in the cold last night to raise funds to combat youth homelessness in Ottawa. The SleepOUT for Youth event, organized by the Youth Services Bureau (YSB) raised $243,741.

Participants included Chief of Police Charles Bordeleau, Deputy Mayor Mark Taylor, Deputy Police Chief Jill Skinner, and many more who spent a night outdoors to raise awareness and funds to fight youth homelessness.

“The young people who are reaching out to us for help have complex needs,” said Joanne Lowe, Executive Director of YSB. “Safe housing includes support for mental health issues, addiction, and help dealing with lack of housing affordability and discrimination. Success for these youth means they don’t become homeless adults.”

Participants fundraised individually and as teams; the donations page will remain open until December 31 at SleepOut.ysb.ca. Funds from this campaign will go towards running housing and support services, including YSB’s emergency shelters for young men and young women. YSB has also embarked on an ambitious project to build a 39-unit youth hub, that will include both housing and support services.

“I think it’s important that we get involved with things in our community,” said one young participant. “I know that I’m not ready to live on my own, so it makes sense that homeless youth need support.”

This year’s event was presented by The BRICK and hosted by TD Place, with sponsors Bell Let’s Talk, Homestead, Scotiabank, Bridgehead, Whole Foods, Gabriel Pizza, Kettleman’s Bagels, Saxon Chocolates, CTV, Majic 100 and CFRA.

About the Youth Services Bureau
YSB is one of the largest and most comprehensive non-profit agencies serving youth in Ottawa. It offers more than 30 programs and serves 3,000 youth and families every month in the areas of youth engagement, housing and homelessness, mental health, youth justice and employment.

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Contact:
Suzanne Fraser, Youth Services Bureau
sfraser@ysb.ca, 613-277-7103

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