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Foundry Sea to Sky opens its doors to young people in Squamish

March 31, 2023 at 11:59 am  BC, News, Politics, Provincial

Young people in Squamish and surrounding communities will have access to more mental-health and addiction services with the opening of the Foundry centre’s permanent location.

Foundry Sea to Sky provides young people from 12 to 24 and their families free and confidential services to fit their unique needs, such as mental-health and substance-use support, youth peer support and social services, and wellness programs. 

“Every young person in British Columbia deserves health-care services that meets their unique needs, including access to primary care, mental-health and addictions support,” said Jennifer Whiteside, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions. “Foundry Sea to Sky offers young people a friendly and welcoming space that provides integrated services, making it easier for young people and their families to get the help they need, right in their own community.”

The centre is operated by Sea to Sky Community Services and is fully operational at 38646 Buckley Ave. in Squamish.

“We know young people need access to mental-health and substance-use services, and the need in our province is increasing,” said Mitzi Dean, Minister of Children and Family Development. “With a complete suite of wellness services available close to home, in a space built just for them, young people are more likely to access the health care they need. Sea to Sky communities now have access to a one-stop service that families can count on, and we look forward to bringing Foundry to even more communities in B.C.”

There are 15 Foundry centres open throughout the province in Vancouver-Granville, North Shore (North Vancouver), Campbell River, Ridge Meadows, Abbotsford, Kelowna, Prince George, Victoria, Penticton, Terrace, Comox Valley, Langley, Richmond and Cariboo-Chilcotin (Williams Lake) and Sea to Sky (Squamish).

An additional eight new Foundry centres are in development in Burns Lake, East Kootenay (Cranbrook), Port Hardy, Surrey, Fort St. John, Tri-Cities, Kamloops and on the Sunshine Coast. Foundry services can also be accessed from anywhere through the Foundry BC app, phone or at: foundrybc.ca/virtual

“Nearly 50% of youth in the Sea to Sky corridor indicated that they didn’t know who and where to turn to for mental-health support,” said Karen Tee, associate executive director, Foundry. “At Foundry, we have an unwavering vision to make mental-health and wellness services as accessible as possible for young people. Foundry Sea to Sky is bringing us one step closer to accomplishing our dream to transform the quality of life for youth across the province.”  

Enhancing supports for young people living with mental-health and addiction challenges is an integral part of A Pathway to Hope, B.C.’s roadmap for building a comprehensive system of mental-health and addiction care for British Columbians.

Quotes:

Bowinn Ma, MLA for North Vancouver-Lonsdale –

“Youth have faced immense challenges over the past few years, including the COVID-19 pandemic, toxic drug crisis and climate-related emergencies. As a result, more young people are reaching out for help. The opening of Foundry Sea to Sky in its permanent location ensures more youth will have access to mental-health and addiction supports closer to home.”

Jaye Russell, executive director, Sea to Sky Community Services Society –

“Feelings of isolation, eating disorders and attempted suicides among youth have increased in recent years. Our youth need local resources now and that’s why Foundry Sea to Sky is the perfect complement to the more than 40 programs and services offered by Sea to Sky Community Services. The opening of Foundry Sea to Sky has been a true community journey, where together we are walking alongside young people to provide them with the programs and supports they need to thrive here in the Sea to Sky.”

Ali Hedberg, peer support worker and former youth advisory committee chair, Foundry Sea to Sky –

“I wish Foundry Sea to Sky had been around five years ago when I was going through a difficult time. At that time, I was dealing with undiagnosed dyslexia along with mental-health challenges. This made going to school a struggle. I knew I needed help, but at the time I wasn’t able to access the right supports in Squamish. Foundry Sea to Sky hopes to change that for today’s youth. This space strives to give young people hope by creating a place where peer mentorship, resources, community and support are accessible. I’m using my experience with mental health to help build a welcoming space where all young people feel safe and supported.”

Learn More:

A Pathway to Hope, government’s vision for mental-health and addictions care in B.C.:
https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2021MMHA0049-001787

Foundry: https://foundrybc.ca/

Sea to Sky Community Services Society: https://www.sscs.ca/

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