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A Way Home Kamloops releases report with a call to action to end youth homelessness

In early September, A Way Home Kamloops released a 90 page report that was co-authored by nine youth with lived experience with homelessness.

The Youth Homelessness Preliminary Summit report makes 14 recommendations and a call to action to end youth homelessness in BC.

Some of the recommendations made include:

  • Support youth voices and their right to choice
  • Help youth find purpose and belonging
  • Increase youth specific housing
  • Pursue reconciliation by supporting Indigenous youth
  • No youth ages out of care without safe, appropriate and stable housing

The report is also dedicated to Katherine McParland, A Way Home Kamloops’ former executive director and founder, who passed away in December 2020.

“In these last 9 months we have been learning how to grow around our grief while honouring Katherine’s life work,” shares Kira Cheeseborough, co-author and programs manager.

“This report is not only a milestone for A Way Home Kamloops, but a testament of our collective healing.”

This report also builds upon McParland’s 2020 report From Marginalized to Magnified: Youth Homelessness Solutions From Those With Lived Expertise.

<who> Photo Credit: A Way Home Kamloops</who> The Youth Homelessness Preliminary Summit Report: Honouring Katherine’s Legacy To Light The Way Home

“This report is one part of the work that took place to begin holding provincial conferences covering youth specific issues of homelessness,” adds Tangie Genshorek, current executive director for A Way Home Kamloops.

The Youth Homelessness Preliminary Summit was hosted in January where topics of foster care, substance use, mental health and youth experiences were discussed.

The 2021 report also comes after the announcement that new supportive homes are being planned for youth in Kamloops, which will be called Katherine’s Place.

“[It] is not only a report that my fellow authors and I worked on to inform policy [...] but every word on every page contains a piece of us and a piece of our passion,” affirms Daniel Galbraith, projects coordinator and co-author.

“This report was authored by some of the most amazing people I know and have ever worked with.”

<who> Photo Credit: BC Housing</who> An early example of the proposed supportive housing for youth in Kamloops.

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