Youth Homelessness is a growing social problem throughout the province; Yarmouth and surrounding communities are not immune. Over the years, a considerable amount of research has been carried out at the local, regional, provincial, and national levels to identify the causes, solutions, best practices, and the population of young people who are faced with relative and absolute homelessness.
Our community has came together to address the crisis of Youth Homelessness in the tri-counties of Yarmouth, Shelburne, and Digby. Many community and government agencies, as well as community volunteers, joined together to form SHYFT (Supportive Housing Youth Focus Team). The solution is to provide the safety and support of a home environment to these at-risk youth, that otherwise live on our streets.
SHYFT has worked to develop a business plan that includes research and first hand voices of homeless youth. That business plan concluded that what is needed is a supportive housing option for youth placed at risk.
With funding from Service Canada - Homelessness Partnering Strategy, SHYFT purchased, renovated, and furnished a home at 6 Trinity Place. It also allowed SHYFT to have a full time Project Manager and Community Support worker to oversee operations and support youth.
Through partnerships with community organizations, individuals and government agencies, SHYFT Youth Services opened it's doors to youth in January, 2011.
On July 1, 2012 after a brief cycle of restructuring, SHYFT reopened. As of July 16, 2012 SHYFT Youth Services offered outreach supports, services and outside agency referrals.
Since April of 2014, SHYFT has been operating 24/7 and offers residential and outreach services to youth in need.
SHYFT wishes to foster new relationships while continuing to collaborate with partnering agencies, organizations and community members for the benefit of our youth.