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YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIM

All YOU Can Be

2010-2011 Annual Report

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Our Mission Youth Opportunities Unlimited is dedicated to unlocking the potential of youth by providing client centred services emphasizing skills improvement leading to increased employability and empowerment, offering a referral service to agencies serving youth, and developing, participating in and supporting community alliances to maximize opportunities for youth.

Our Vision Youth Opportunities Unlimited is a caring and active place where all youth are engaged in learning and creating opportunities to build their future.

Our Values Client Centred We are respectful in all of our client interactions; flexible and inclusive in providing services that meet clients’ needs. Community Focused We are locally driven and gather input from many community sectors on an ongoing basis. Fun We create and support environments that are enjoyable, positive and respectful. Integrity We are honest, responsive, clear, and ethical in all of our communications and interactions. Quality Driven We set high standards for success and work hard to surpass them.

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YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be


Table of Contents President’s Report............................................. 4

Since 1982 Youth Opportunities Unlimited has helped lead

Board of Directors............................................. 5

youth in London and Middlesex County toward success.

Executive Director’s Report............................... 6

We believe that investing in youth and strong communities

Leadership Team............................................... 7 YOU Team......................................................... 8 Transition Services............................................ 9 Career Services............................................... 10 Enterprise Services......................................... 11 Next Wave Youth Centre................................. 12

go hand-in-hand. We know that many youth need guidance and support to reach their true potential. We work with our business, community and government partners to address youths’ most pressing needs. Through Transition, Career and Enterprise Services we provide youth with the training, skills development, supports and referrals they need to develop their potential and lead positive lives.

Springbank Employment and Learning Centre........................................ 13 Youth Star Award............................................. 14 Polaris Award.................................................. 15 Steve Cordes Community Star Award................................... 16 Nick DiSanto Youth Entrepreneurial Award..................................... 17 5th annual Breakfast for YOU Empowering YOUth ....................................... 18

COVER: Photographed on the roof of The Cornerstone, 332 Richmond St. The three storey downtown landmark now completing renovation, will be a national prototype in providing extensive holistic services and supports for local youth in the areas of affordable housing, health and nutrition, alternative education, counselling, skills development and employment opportunities.

Revenues and Expenditures............................ 19 Annual Report Published June 2011

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YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be

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President’s Report Dear Friends, Like so many others, I am inspired by the youth we work with. Their resiliency with struggles and challenges, their determination to be all they can be, helps us be all we can be. YOU is dedicated to helping youth in need. This means anticipating changes in our community and beyond, and continuing to innovate and adapt so as to provide youth with the necessary programs and services they need to build positive lives.

on the roof of Photographed e where a The Cornerston eeting room community m ction. is under constru al provide season A garden will uce for the herbs and prod U Made It Café. street level YO

“I am inspired by the youth we work with.”

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During the past year, YOU had much to celebrate. The 5th annual Breakfast for YOU was a resounding success attended by more than 600 business and community leaders. The two youth Breakfast speakers touched the hearts and minds of each and every person present. Our expertise in the field of social enterprise can be seen in our three businesses (Woodshop, Recycling and Kitchen/Retail Kiosk) which continue to grow and offer youth valuable learning opportunities, skills training and jobs. YOU’s unique model of youth engagement can be seen in Transition, Enterprise and Career Services and in our special events where youth are at the forefront. The renovation of The Cornerstone nears completion. This heritage building, in the heart of downtown London, will soon be a dynamic model of integrated and sustainable programs and services strengthened by innovative community partnerships. None of YOU’s accomplishments could be realized without the significant contributions of the talented and committed staff team. In many ways, the Board of Directors is the community voice of YOU. Board members bring skills, expertise and insight which support and strengthen YOU’s vision. It is my pleasure to welcome the newest members: Michael Lewis and Lane Trotter. Together we face new challenges with confidence knowing we are part of a much larger caring community.

Brian Hughes, President, Board of Directors.

YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be


2010/2011 Board of Directors

Front Row, LEFT TO RIGHT Kim Fraser, Diana Ferrera, Michael Mitchell, Phil Masschelein

de It Woodshop Photographed at the YOU Ma ign and build quality where youth par ticipants des guidance outdoor furniture under the of a supervisor/mentor.

Back Row, LEFT TO RIGHT Cheryl Miller, Walter LeGrow, Lane Trotter, Jim Graham, Grant Glady, Brian Hughes, Dan Grantham, Michael Lewis, Ryan Craig

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YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be

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Executive Director’s Report When a community works together great things happen. Our growing list of partners and community sectors who join us in meeting the employment, training and support needs of our region’s youth is an excellent example. In the past year almost 3,000 young people in London and Middlesex County were the beneficiaries of our combined efforts. Our work helps youth with transitional needs line up supports and services to build a solid base from which to go forward. In many cases, this includes meals, help with income supports, access to affordable housing, advice and support. Together our community contributed generously through donations, funding and partnerships. This support is crucial. Lives are saved. Young people find the strength and commitment to succeed. For those who attended Breakfast for YOU, the young women who presented the keynote address delivered a powerful message. Together we have made our community better. Together we have made our community stronger. Many young people come to YOU focused on launching their careers. They face a challenging labour market and need to draw on a variety of supports and services to help get a “foot in the door” and secure the skills development and experiences that will help develop long term, meaningful opportunities. Our community partners responded by working with us to build substantial programs and services.

Photographed on the roof of The Cornerstone. itage The redevelopment of our her nt building is a legacy of investme h in youth. It’s made possible wit tners the suppor t of our many par ss, in community ser vice, busine education and healthcare. “Together we have made our community better. Together we have made our community stronger.”

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In partnership with both local school boards, YOU hosts three alternative education centres. All levels of government are invested in offering job search resource centres, employment counselling, skills training and job placement programs. More than 300 businesses hired through YOU in the past year. Hundreds of customers interact with our youth manufacturing and sales teams through YOU Made It. Together, we are creating long term economic prosperity for young people, while providing them with the skills, experience and confidence necessary to succeed. We are fortunate. We have committed partners, a highly engaged youth-focused staff, volunteers who provide vital supports and a Board of Directors who commit their time, expertise and resources. Together we ensure YOU fulfills its mission. Our heartfelt thanks to all of you! Respectfully submitted,

Steve Cordes, Executive Director

YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be


Leadership Team

LEFT TO RIGHT Andrea Decoste, Director, Finance & Administration Steve Cordes, Executive Director Melissa Costella, Director, Operations & Project Management Christine Dirks, Director, Marketing & Communications

It Recycling. Photographed at YOU Made ly recycles 310,000 lbs of YOU Made It Recycling annual of paper and plastics. cardboard and 225,000 lbs

ser vice To enquire about our Recycling please call 519.808.2729.

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YOU Team

It Recycling. Photographed at YOU Made m 900 to The cardboard bales weigh fro Recycling has 1000 lbs each. YOU Made It more than ser ved London businesses for grams and 15 years. Revenue goes to pro ser vices for local youth. ser vice To enquire about our Recycling please call 519.808.2729.

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The diverse YOU Team includes Job Developers, Workshop Facilitators, Youth Outreach Workers, Employment Counsellors, industry experts, Administrative, Management and Job Creation Partnership positions and youth within Enterprise Services. The YOU team brings varied academic expertise and professional backgrounds to their work. These include social service educations, recreation and leisure diplomas, career practitioner diplomas, graduate degrees and decades of front-line experience. YOU recruits individuals who have the skills and attributes to engage youth and help youth build positive lives.

YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be


Transition Services Creative collaborations with community partners enabled Transition Services to continue to serve youth in ways that meet youths’ needs. Dynamic enhancements to programs and steady growth defined the work of the Transition Services team. Partnerships included the Regional HIV Aids Connection, London Middlesex Health Unit, Intercommunity Health, The University of Western Ontario, TD Canada Trust Bank, Lawson Research, London Small Business Centre, LUSO Community Centre and many volunteer groups that provide the Youth Action Centre (YAC) with dinners as well as many other organizations. In the past year 144 new youth visited the YAC with a total of 12,000 youth visits. This represents a 22 percent increase over the previous year. For 15 years the Youth Insight team has educated our community about youth issues and youth resiliency. This year more than 3,000 community members accessed Youth Insight in which youth share their stories with schools, businesses, church groups and organizations. As a direct result, 75 percent of audience members reported they want to be more involved in their community and 20 Fanshawe and Western students chose YOU to complete their placement requirements. The new Youth Matters Study, in partnership with Lawson Research, addresses issues of mental health, homelessness, addiction and poverty in the core areas of London. Information is drawn largely from youth accessing our Youth Action Centre (YAC) and from referrals by partnering agencies. Our Street Outreach team has been instrumental in providing information about the study to harder-to-reach youth. The team recently visited our Next Wave Youth Centre in Strathroy to include rural youth from surrounding areas of London. To date, 185 youth have participated in the study.

In the past year 144 new youth visited the YAC with 12,000 youth visits in total.

178 youth par ticipated in the s Youth Endeavouring for Succes (YES) program.

One hundred and seventy-eight youth participated in the Youth Endeavouring for Success (YES) program, now in its sixth year. Seventy-nine participants moved on to the next employment related steps of their individual action plan. Forty-two participants found employment and 50 returned to school as a direct result of the YES program.

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Career Ser vices Career Services experienced considerable success with many new learning, training and employment opportunities to help youth make positive steps towards their individual career and training goals.

imately had approx e tr en C e h T per month. 600 visitors

The Career Services team delivered new projects including Individual Skills Enhancement (ISE), Skills Practice & Relationship Knowledge Building Program (SPARK) and Work and Learn. Through these programs youth, including young parents, had the opportunity to explore training, discover next steps in their career path, access employment placements and work toward the completion of grade 12. Fifty youth participated with very positive results. Training opportunities through ISE included: Construction Technologies, Security Guard Diploma, Property Maintenance and Forklift Training. A total of nine participants took part in ISE and were eligible for up to $5,000 per participant in these training opportunities. Participants in the SPARK program all developed confidence in areas regarding life skills, employability and workplace experience. Three SPARK participants secured employment in the travel and social service sectors and 79 percent of all those who completed the project secured employment. The friendly and knowledgeable Job Search Resource Centre staff team provided supports to the public including assistance with resume and interview preparation, referrals to other community supports and agencies as well as information on training, options for education and summer employment for the student job seeker. The Centre had approximately 600 visitors per month.

Employment Counsellors have appointments with approximately 400 youth per month.

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Youth who access Career Services through an Employment Counsellor receive assistance in career decision making, updated job search skills and access to employment, education and training. Employment Counsellors have appointments with approximately 400 youth per month. By year-end, 75 percent of youth participants had an employed outcome. The food industry, catering, customer service, retail, landscape, graphic design and automotive were among the sectors in which placements were made and in which youth secured employment.

YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be


Enterprise Services The Social Enterprise program has again experienced significant growth and development. Under the leadership of our new Retail & Sales Supervisor, sales and community awareness of our Market Quality Preserves, Gift Baskets, Wood Furniture, Recycling Services, Catering and Compassion in Fashion Jewelry continue to grow. The sales team showcased YOU Made It products at events throughout London including the Farmers’ Market, Cherryhill Mall and One London Place, while sales at the YOU Made It retail kiosk at Covent Garden Market saw an 80 percent percent increase over the year past.

70% of participants either gained employment or returned to school.

Woodshop and Recycling operations are now located at one facility which has increased job training opportunities for our youth. We continue to raise Health and Safety awareness to not only meet but exceed Ministry of Labour standards. Plans for the YOU Made It Café are in the final stages of development following an Operations & Business Plan with a three-year financial forecast. The plan was prepared by an independent consultant. The Café will be open for breakfast and lunch Monday through Friday with an emphasis on fresh, local and nutritious food. Based on the plan, we have hired an Executive Chef & Youth Mentor who is working with his youth team on menu development, kitchen layout and implementing various aspects of the plan. While The Cornerstone building undergoes complete renovation, we have utilized the kitchen at St. Paul’s Cathedral. In so doing we have formed a strong partnership with their team. Highlights of outcomes: • Provided more than 60 youth with relevant job training, skills development and valuable work experience • 88 percent of participants completed the program • 70 percent of participants either gained employment or returned to school • 10 London retailers now feature Market Quality Preserves and YOU Made It wood products • YOU Made It Recycling has increased its customer base to 125 and continues to process and ship in excess of 900,000 pounds of recyclables a year

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ture 10 London retailers now fea Market Quality Preser ves and YOU Made It wood products.

YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be

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Next Wave Youth Centre

5,100 youth attended the Centre for activities and assistance with job searches.

The Break into Business program completed its eighth successful session with a total of 48 youth participants throughout the year.

Since opening in 2007, Next Wave Youth Centre has provided youth in Middlesex County with programs and services to help them reach their goals and guide them on a path to a successful future. Located on Front Street in downtown Strathroy, the Centre provides youth ages 12 to 29 with career counselling, café training, volunteer opportunities and education options. The Break into Business program, in partnership with Community Futures Development Corporation of Middlesex County, provides youth with an opportunity to work in the Next Wave Café, receive certification in Service Excellence and Safe Food Handling, and attend workshops on developing and marketing a business. The program also allows youth to gain insight into self-employment through on-the-job experience. This year The Break into Business program completed its eighth successful session with a total of 48 youth participants throughout the year. In the Resource Centre staff assist youth with resumes and job searches. Last year, 5,100 youth attended the Centre for activities and assistance with job searches with 171 youth attending career workshops. The Centre also provides a monthly calendar of scheduled workshops for Smart Serve Training, First Aid and CPR Certification and WHMIS. During the school year, 11 members of Next Wave Youth Council meet monthly to discuss challenges facing today’s youth and plan recreational activities for the Centre including foosball tournaments, cooking competitions and talent shows. Council members are from Strathroy District Collegiate Institute and Holy Cross Catholic Secondary School in Strathroy. In February, Next Wave Youth Centre opened a renovated on-site office and meeting space available for organizations and community groups in Middlesex County to use for small gatherings, interviews or business meetings. Catering is provided by youth participants in the Break into Business program. The project is in partnership with the Homelessness Partnering Strategy through the United Way of Greater Simcoe County. Next Wave continues to build strong community relationships by collaborating with local partners such as the Strathroy Chamber of Commerce and Strathroy & Area Seniors’ Centre on special events including Strathroy Hometown Turkey Festival, Strathroy & Area Seniors’ Centre Garage Sale & BBQ and Strathroy 150th Birthday Celebration. The Centre is a member of the Strathroy Business Improvement Association, the Strathroy Chamber of Commerce and the Strathroy District Arts Council.

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YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be


Springbank Employment and Learning Centre The Springbank Employment and Learning Centre is a multi-use neighbourhood based community resource which delivers quality services to youth, newcomers, job seekers, businesses and students residing in Southwest London. Since opening in 2000 the Centre has developed strong partnerships and become a true community hub. The Centre is home to an Alternative Learning classroom of the Thames Valley District School Board. The Centre for Lifelong Learning of the London District Catholic School Board supports on-site English as a Second Language classes with software for ESL learning and ESL computer tutorials available in the Resource Centre. The City of London offers on-site Spectrum programs in the evenings. The Centre provides free internet, job search tools, employment workshops and counselling for those seeking full-time, part-time or summer employment. The Centre welcomed new community partner Spencer Employment Services which provides weekly Vocational Consultation through the Cascade Program (WSIB). The Centre exceeded all funding targets by 25 percent. Staff helped 794 youth and 341 community members find employment or enter into education and training opportunities and supported 1,315 youth through outreach services. Ninety-two percent of those seeking employment or wanting to enter college or university education or training opportunities through the Centre achieved successful results. In addition, the Centre also supported 11,871 return visitors.

This past year the Centre exceeded all funding targets by 25 percent.

The Centre also suppor ted 11,871 return visitors.

During National Youth Week the Centre hosted the 4th annual Career Carnival. One hundred and twenty secondary school students participated in the event, enjoying games and activities pertaining to interview skills, apprenticeships, volunteer opportunities and summer jobs. Partners for this popular event included ATN Access Inc., the Boys & Girls Club of London, Hutton House, Pillar Volunteer Services and London Public Library.

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Youth Star Award

Youth Star Award

The Youth Star Award recognizes a youth in London and Middlesex who has overcome significant barriers and who has demonstrated perseverance, commitment and responsibility.

Joy Cameron In her darkest days, Joy Cameron was, she says, “absolutely miserable to be with”. The darkest days were marked by clinical depression and self-harm to numb the pain of feeling alone within a family marked by turmoil, tension and hurt. It began when Joy was in grade eight. At 17 she left home. Two years later she tried to “tackle” her depression by going off medication and found herself deeper in depression with thoughts of suicide. Soon Joy was hospitalized. It was a turning point. She came to accept that with the medication she could find the stability she needed to live the life she wanted. That life meant reconnecting with her “biggest obstacle”, her family. It meant being open to forgive and open to receive forgiveness. And it meant seeking support from others. “I began to appreciate how precious help can be.” She credits the Youth Action Centre, the Mental Health Crisis Line, Daya Counselling and her close friends at Gateway Church who are, she says, like family. “They’re the ones I turn to when things are rough, whether to vent and be encouraged, or to simply hang out with and have fun. I cannot imagine my life without these people.” Previous Recipients

It took Joy seven years to complete high school. She persevered because despite the turmoil she knew that education is key to a better life. Today Joy is in the second year of the Child and Youth Worker program at Fanshawe College, with a particular interest in homelessness and women’s issues. She is a junior high leader at Gateway Church and a member of the Youth Insight Team at the Youth Action Centre. As a Team member Joy has done dozens of public ‘speaks’ about the resiliency of youth and the continuing need for services so youth can overcome obstacles and realize their potential. Part of her work as a Youth Insight Team member is participating in team building exercises, workshops and connecting with people from all walks of life – all of which gives her great happiness. “I’ve learned how to manage my depression” says Joy with a smile, “and that makes a world of difference.”

Mark LeBlanc - 2010 Daniel Denomy - 2009 Allison Parke-Rye - 2008 Joe Maatman - 2007 Dylan Reilly - 2006 Amanda Darrah - 2005 Siobhan McCarty - 2004 Joe Richards - 2003 Genevieve Simms - 2002

“I began to appreciate how precious help can be.”

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YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be


Polaris Award The Polaris Award recognizes an individual, organization or private company that has been a guiding light to youth through strong leadership and personal commitment in the area of youth services in London and Middlesex County.

Patricia O’Connor Several times a week Public Health Nurse Patricia O’Connor speaks with youth at the Next Wave Youth Centre about drug and alcohol use, safe sex, hygiene, mental health, relationships, healthy living and other topics. She listens, offers friendly guidance and advice, encourages participation in new programs and community activities, nurtures potential, seeks collaborative solutions and always puts youth first. She does all this with a positive attitude and calm demeanour. Youth trust, respect and like Patricia. They call her by her first name. Patricia says youth are great teachers. “They’re constantly stretching me. They teach me how to really listen, to be flexible and open to new ways of being and thinking. They challenge me to not assume anything and to never lose my sense of humour.” Since starting work with Next Wave little more than two years ago Patricia has helped establish a New Parents Group which includes young dads, for whom there are “few community supports.” She is an original member and active participant of the new Youth Providers Committee for Middlesex County. She regularly analyzes youth needs in the community and seeks out resources to ensure they are met and actively seeks new networking opportunities of benefit to youth. Patricia hopes to be part of Next Wave for many years to come. “It provides a safe and supportive environment where youth can drop in, learn, play, work and have opportunities to give back to the community.” Youth have a lot to deal with, says Patricia. She cites struggles with learning, peer pressure and peer rejection, bullying, family issues, prejudice against LGBT youth, stigma around teen parents and the need for basics - food, clothing and affordable housing. “I’m privileged to see how resilient youth are given the life experiences some have had.” Often, says Patricia, the little things can be especially heartwarming. “When you see a youth speak up about a problem or issue because they’ve gained empowerment after much struggling, when you see them find their voice - that is a special moment.”

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Previous Recipients Chris Bowden - 2010 Cara Finn - 2009 Andrée Cazabon - 2008 Michael’s on the Thames - 2007 West London Alliance Church - 2006 Covent Garden Market - 2005 LHSC’s Pepp Program - 2004 London Innercity Faith Team - 2003 Ormah Gibson - 2002

“They challenge me to not er assume anything and to nev lose my sense of humour.”

YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be

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Steve Cordes Community Star Award This award was created by the Board of Directors in 2008 to recognize exceptional, long-term commitment to youth in London and area.

St. Patrick’s Parish Each year before Christmas, members of the congregation of St. Patrick’s Parish fill several cars with new winter clothing, hand-knit goods, household items and other holiday gifts. The gifts are taken to the Youth Action Centre where later they are given to the many youth who visit the Centre. The giving began 10 years ago when Fr. Bob Wilson remarked to the Parish’s Youth Ministry Team that while families and younger children are cared for by community agencies during the holiday season, youth are often overlooked. Two members of the Team were then in the Child and Youth Worker program at Fanshawe College and were doing placement at the Youth Action Centre. They knew the need was great and suggested the Parish focus their giving on the youth who rely on the Centre for comfort, support and resources. Lynn Di Pinto has worked with the Youth Ministry Team for more than 30 years. The act of giving is a “Parish event” says Lynn. It’s known as the Giving Tree/Giving Box. “Each November, a tree and boxes are placed at the entrance to the church. Stars with the names of different gift items are placed on the tree. Parishioners who wish to be involved take a star and purchase the gift. It’s something we want to do” says Lynn.

Previous Recipients Joyce Bennett - 2010 Cheryl Miller - 2009

e uth of both th “It instills in yo e and the Centr Ministry Team g.” the joy of givin

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Towards Christmas the Parish invites staff from the Centre to a Sunday ceremony in which Parish representatives speak to the congregation of why the Centre is important. The congregation’s commitment serves an additional purpose, says Lynn. “It instills in youth of both the Ministry Team and the Centre the joy of giving.” After the service, parishioners deliver the gifts to the Centre. Over the years, the warm relationship between the St. Patrick’s Parish and the Youth Action Centre has grown. Youth speakers from the Centre meet with the Team to talk about life on the streets, teen pregnancy and other issues. “I am sure this awareness has had a positive influence on our young people”, says Lynn. The relationship continues to grow. Last year during severe and extensive snow storms, and with many members affected by job loss and financial difficulties, the Parish donated more generously than ever.

YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be


Nick DiSanto Youth Entrepreneurial Award This award recognizes the entrepreneurial talents of youth at Youth Opportunities Unlimited. The Board of Directors created the award in 2008 in memory of a YOU friend who, after a short career working for others, opened his own business and became a successful entrepreneur.

Tracy Little As chef and burgeoning entrepreneur, Tracy Little views her years of living on the street as formative. She learned how to evaluate risk, spot opportunities and not give up. “It’s always the hard work that gets you to the point that you can make the impossible happen”, says Tracy. During those early years, when she didn’t know where she would sleep, and what - if anything - she would eat, the idea of a better life kept her going. “I think of myself as an opportunist in the most positive sense of the word. There is so much out there. All we have to do is keep it in mind and work hard to get it, whatever it may be.” Today, Tracy is a Red Seal certified chef working as Head Chef at Milton Lake Lodge in Saskatchewan with previous positions as Pastry Chef at Garlic’s of London and Braise Food and Wine. She is quick to credit those who helped her make the transition. One was her late uncle Shawn. “He was my friend and mentor. He taught me about good food and how it’s a tool to bring people together.” Another was the staff at the Youth Action Centre who hired Tracy to be part of a youth team to create an achingly honest book on youth homelessness called Flying A Sign. Meals shared around the big table at the Centre nurtured her growing desire to be a chef. She found work helping in kitchens and soon applied to the Cook Apprenticeship Program at Fanshawe College. During her first year at college, she used money saved from work to begin a freelance catering business. Her first jobs were private dinners for friends’ parents or for parents’ friends. Weddings, baby showers and birthday parties followed. Small dinner parties are a favourite. Tracy says in five years she will either be in New York pursuing her career or close to London where she has purchased her first home. In the meantime, Tracy volunteers with Growing Chefs which gets kids excited about good, healthy food and where chef volunteers are paired with elementary school classrooms to give students hands-on experience growing and cooking their own food. Wherever she is Tracy will undoubtedly exhibit the creativity, planning and patience of a chef with the independent, determined spirit of the entrepreneur.

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Previous Recipients Dana Brushette - 2010 Duane Lauzon - 2009

“It’s always the hard work that gets you to the point that you can make the impossible happen”.

YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be

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5th annual Breakfast for YOU Empowering YOUth Thursday, February 3, 2011 • London Convention Centre

“I am impressed by the breadth and variety of community connections that Youth Opportunities Unlimited has fostered. The YOU Breakfast was supported by people from so many facets of the wider community, and there was such a positive spirit in the room, I couldn’t help but feel enthusiastic about the organization’s compassionate and innovative programs.” Kevin Dixon Dean, St. Paul’s Cathedral

“YOU has continuously demonstrated, time and again, that they are a compassionate, caring service provider. Listening to young adults speak so passionately about how YOU changed their lives left me emotionally touched. Because of YOU these individuals have a new outlook on life.” Denise Brown Corporate Sales Manager, Aboutown Transportation Limited “The YOU breakfast is a great way to start a cold winter day. Heartwarming stories from clients who have used the many services YOU has to offer to get them back on their feet. Seeing the room full of people who have made a positive impact on our city, sends a wonderful message to our community. Together we can make a big difference.” Chris Bowden Volunteer, Youth Action Centre

“To empower our youth is to empower our community.” Rick and Megan Gleed at DTZ Barnicke, Presenting Sponsor Breakfast for YOU is a key event not only in the YOU calendar but in the community calendar as well. It is a heartwarming gathering at which YOU friends, and those who are just learning about the organization, gain insight into the challenges, issues and resiliency of youth. Keynote speakers Tracy Little and Chantel Grayston-Clairmont spoke with candor about their journeys, their hopes and how with the help of a caring community they were able to take the steps necessary to build positive lives. As they shared their stories with more than 600 guests at the London Convention Centre the quiet was audible. As each ended her story, guests burst to their feet in a spontaneous standing ovation. Tracy and Chantel’s stories can be viewed at: www.youtube.com search “Youth Opportunities Unlimited - Hear my Story” Thank you to all who attended the 5th annual Breakfast for YOU, who made donations to the online auction and to additional sponsors: Libro Financial Group, Gordons Gold Jewellers, RBC, Davis Martindale Accountants and Cheryl Miller. Special thanks to Mayor Fontana and Chief of Police Brad Duncan for their fun, engaging live auction.

“The YOU Breakfast was an eye-opening and touching experience that I cherish. We were let into the worlds of two incredible YOU survivors whose recounting of their journeys from struggle to success deeply inspired everyone in attendance. It was a fantastic and uplifting event.” Trina Poulopoulos Student, Ivey School of Business The 6th annual Breakfast for YOU Empowering YOUth takes place Thursday, February 2, 2012 at the London Convention Centre.

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YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be


Revenues and Expenditures Revenues

Total Revenues

$5,713,284

Amortization of Deferred Contributions Relating to Capital Assets Donations & Fundraising United Way of London & Middlesex Earned Revenue Municipal Provincial Federal

Expenditures Other Operating Expenses Professional Fees Program Delivery Amortization Ontario Works Disbursements Participant Wages & Stipends Salaries & Benefits

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YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES UNLIMITED 2010-2011 All YOU Can Be

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Youth Opportunities Unlimited

proudly acknowledges our funders and major donors

All Funder logos

www.you.on.ca 20


YOU Annual Report 2010 - 2011