The Squamish Youth Resource Centre is getting a long-awaited facelift, but the organization needs help to make the final touch-ups a reality.
With the help of Home Depot, youth workers and local teenagers are painting the inside of the centre next to Howe Sound Secondary School. The centre’s users are also hunting for new furniture, said Kathy Daniels, outreach manager for the Sea to Sky Community Services, which runs the youth centre.
While the inside is set to be brightened up, the future of the building’s exterior is still in question, she noted. Last painted in early 2000, the facility is in need of a new coat, but it’s a job that requires outside help, Daniels said.
The centre’s budget, which is administered by the District of Squamish, has remained the same since 2007, she said. By the end of the year, the centre is left with approximately $1,500 of wiggle room, Daniels noted, adding that that makes it difficult to upgrade the facility and continue to run programming.
The centre’s upgrades reach deeper than a coat of paint and some new furniture, she said.
“I think it shows [youth] that we care enough for them to have a nice place,” Daniels said. “When you show respect to them, you get respect.”
After a year’s hiatus, the organization is restarting its youth snowboarding team. The program gives teenagers who show an interest in the centre and community an opportunity to partake in a weekly snowboard camp run by a youth worker, who is also a snowboard instructor. The centre is looking to Whistler Blackcomb for ski tickets and to Squamish residents to help raise cash for Greyhound bus passes.
“The general public can also donate snowboards and jackets,” Daniels said.
Last year, the program was cancelled because of a lack of money, said Renee Theoret, the centre’s community program coordinator.
“We are hoping to get business in town to sponsor youth,” she said.
Once the centre’s upgrades are complete, the participating youth will host an open house at the facility, located at 1135 Carson Place. The centre is open seven days a week from 3 to 9 p.m.
For more information call (604) 892-2207 or visit http://www.sscs.ca/youth/youth-centre.