Community Reintegration Program

YSB has a long history of working with youth in conflict with the law. Our staff and community partners have developed expertise in helping young people with the issues they face. The Community Reintegration Program aims to reduce recidivism — repeat offending — by discovering the underlying causes of the behaviour. When youth recognize the connections among thought patterns, behaviours and the resulting consequences, they’re better equipped to build healthy relationships, focus on the future and become productive members of society.

This voluntary program is offered to youth in open or secure custody. A community reintegration worker makes contact with the youth to outline the program and its potential benefits and to invite the youth to accept the support services as well as the opportunity to participate in counselling.

The program offers individual, couple and family counselling to address a wide range of issues, including:

  • Peer and family relationships
  • Lifestyle changes
  • Violent behaviours
  • Substance abuse

Initially, the reintegration worker helps youth deal with the issues of being in custody. After the youth is discharged, the counselling process continues in the community, where the reintegration worker acts as a liaison between the youth and Probation Services, schools, employment programs, and more.

Youth in this program also have priority access to other services offered by YSB, including housing and health services.

How to access the program

This program is available to youth in the justice system only by referral. Probation Services, custody facilities, or other Youth Justice organizations* can make arrangements by contacting the program coordinator at the phone number or email address below.

613-738-2104

* Please note that in cases where referrals are made from other Youth Justice organizations, probation officers will be notified.

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Milo's Story

Every year when I was little, I’d think “this will be the year that everything will be okay”. And every year, I’d be crushed. By the time I was 18 I couldn’t take my dad’s drinking or my mom’s crying anymore, so I packed a knapsack with the warmest clothes I had and I left. It was freezing cold, and I was alone…but I was free.

The next few months were rough and at times very scary. I spent nights in parks, doorways and even under bridges all with just an old sleeping bag a friend had given me. One night it was so cold that I walked until the sun came up, afraid that I would freeze to death if I slept.

It took me awhile to get over the embarrassment to start asking people for money. But, it was swallow my pride or stay cold and hungry. After two weeks of doing this I learned about YSB. I didn’t know it then but, in that moment, my life changed for the better. I got connected to YSB’s Young Men’s Emergency Shelter and my first night in the shelter I slept 11 hours. I felt so safe and secure. I remember that moment clearly and I felt so hopeful I now have my own apartment in one of YSB’s long-term housing buildings, am attending college to become a graphic designer, and am working part-time to support myself.

“For the first time I can remember, I’m really excited about my future. Growing up I just thought about getting by one day at a time.” I hope my story conveys just how life changing it was for me to be able to access YSB’s shelter during a really difficult time in my life. The team at YSB supported me every step of the way, and I’m grateful they were by my side. I hope you’ll consider taking the opportunity to transform the life of another young person like me today.

Milo*

*While Milo’s story is real his name has been changed to protect his privacy