Connecting Youth with Community and Community with Youth

We connect adult volunteers in a positive way with young people who are at risk of or have involvement with the criminal justice system. Our approach is always strength focused, seeing beyond what’s wrong to nurture what’s strong. Our impact is young people who feel valued and supported to be a part of our community in a meaningful way.

Our programs reflect a paradigm shift in thinking about interventions with youth who are vulnerable for engaging in high-risk behaviours.

Instead of the traditional model of negative labeling and attempting to control at-risk behaviours and attitudes, we begin with the understanding that all youth have the potential to be resilient if engaged in ways that affirm their value as the starting point for positive change. We believe that young people can and will become valuable contributors to their communities when given a chance to change.

Strong Not Wrong
See for yourself what is possible when we define youth by what is strong in them, and not what is wrong.
See their stories

Programs

Youth Justice Committees are an alternative to court. The Committees find appropriate and meaningful consequences and solutions for young people between 12 – 18 years involved in criminal activity as well as the victims of these crimes.

Youth Justice Committees are an alternative to court that gives young people a second chance on a bad decision. Youth Justice Committee volunteers help young people move through and past a minor offence by holding them accountable without holding them back. With support, young people from all walks of life turn their mistakes into opportunities to grow and give back to their communities.

In the Lead is an innovative leadership and character-building approach that engages with what is strong in a young person as opposed to what is wrong. It increases resilience and reduces the likelihood of risk-taking behaviour that could lead to criminal activity or leaving school.

A strength-based leadership development program for overlooked leaders. In the Lead reaches out to youth in our city who are struggling to see and use their natural leadership abilities in beneficial ways. Where others see deficits and risk, we see strengths and possibility. With added encouragement from volunteers within Calgary’s corporate community, students transform their views of themselves, their communities and their futures. In the Lead has proven to increase resilience in young people, increase self-esteem and connection to the community and reduce the likelihood of risk-taking behaviour that could lead to criminal activity or leaving school.