Eva’s Initiatives for Homeless Youth is an award-winning organization that provides shelter, transitional housing, and programming to help homeless and at-risk youth reach their potential to lead productive, self-sufficient, and healthy lives.
Thanks to the generosity of our donors, 123 youth aged 16 to 24 find safe shelter and support in our facilities every night. Eva’s gives youth the tools to transition out of homelessness permanently.
Eva’s was named in honour of Eva Smith, a high school guidance counsellor in North York, who noticed that youth at-risk and those who were homeless were unrecognized and unsupported. Through her advocacy and determination, Eva’s Place was created in 1994.
Eva’s Place: 40-bed emergency shelter and home to the Family Reconnect Program. Eva’s Satellite: 33-bed emergency shelter that also specializes in harm reduction for youth with substance use and mental health needs.
Eva’s Phoenix: townhouse-style transitional housing for 50 youth, providing education support and employment training.
Youth have access to a range of services including crisis counselling, independent living skills training, education support, employment training, recreational activities and more. Our dedicated team works with each young person to develop and act on a personalized action plan that empowers them to achieve their goals. We track progress through a rigorous case management process that continues until goals have been reached and, often, beyond.
Snapshot: Eva’s Impact (2016) 1,034 youth were provided safe shelter in our facilities 174 youth were supported to go back to school and/or trained in construction, digital design/print, and employment training Over 3,000 sessions were provided to youth on cooking and nutrition, personal care, financial literacy, and other life skills 382 youth and their families were served by the Family Reconnect Program 1,193 youth were served by our harm reduction programming for young people dealing with addictions and mental health needs.
HOW EVA’S SUPPORTS YOUTH
Eva’s staff work with each homeless youth to develop a personalized action plan. This plan is designed to empower each young person to achieve both short- and long-term personal and career goals. This intake, assessment and screening process considers the whole person – mental, physical and aspirational. Youth are also encouraged to participate in:
• Employment & Training – offers focused employment support through hands-on training, internships, on-the-job training, interview preparation, and access to meaningful employment. The Programs include Fundamentals of Print Training Program and Construction and Building Maintenance Training Program
• Education – supports our youth’s re-integration into academic programs including access to alternative programs and financial resources, while prioritizing academic and housing goals
• Phoenix Print Shop-Social Enterprise/Commercial Print Shop – the Fundamentals of Print Training Program prepares youth for entry-level employment in the print and graphics industry through hands-on training in computer graphics, offset printing, digital imaging, and bindery along with internships and job development support
• Independent Living Skills – teaches basic life and work skills to empower young people in challenging situations (e.g. financial literacy, cooking, housing searches/stability, conflict resolution)
• Family Reconnect – helps homeless youth reconnect with their families and keeps youth, through prevention/early intervention, from leaving home in the first place
• Harm Reduction – provides peer programming, counselling on alcohol and drug use, safe sex and healthy relationships, distributes safe supplies, and educates on safe use practices
• Recreation – encourages fitness, health and wellness and allows vulnerable youth to have fun, build healthy relationships, develop skills and build community connections, and work on healing in a safe, non-clinical, non-judgmental environment