City of Brantford and County of Brant Partner to Develop Community Youth Strategy 

For Immediate Release
3/23/2016 
Contact: Maria Visocchi, Manager Corporate Communications 
Phone: 519.759.4150 

The City of Brantford and the County of Brant have joined forces, forming a coalition made up of staff from both respective Community Services commissions and Brantford and Brant County libraries, with the ultimate objective of helping youth thrive through access to quality programs and services. The strategy is a collaborative initiative involving both municipalities, community organizations, school boards and youth. The strategy is intended to be a guiding framework to support the development and implementation of youth programs through engagement and partnerships.

Development of the community youth strategy will be informed by:

  • A comparative review of emerging municipal approaches to youth programs and services.
  • Active participation in the community wide Youth Collective Impact to provide a framework to deliver programs and services specifically tailored to meet youth needs.
  • Findings provided by a survey facilitated by the Brant Youth Wellness Coalition youth vision project. Preliminary themes indicate youth respondents are most concerned about educational achievement, gaining the respect of family and friends and accessing Wi-Fi (to obtain information about jobs, supports, education.
  • Findings from a research project regarding youth engagement facilitated by Wilfrid Laurier University in conjunction with the City of Brantford.
  • Ongoing engagement with the Brantford Youth Council to solicit feedback regarding parks and recreation programming.

Consistent with the City of Brantford’s community strategic framework the youth strategy will encompass a Graduate Brantford component with objectives to increase EQAO scores in Brantford schools, encourage completion of Grade 12 and provide ongoing education opportunities that are flexible and affordable for all. Correspondingly, the plan will include a Safe Brantford component that incorporates a comprehensive needs assessment completed as part of the broader Mental Health Strategy and the Youth Services Strategy. Generating opportunities in safe and healthy environments is key to a safe and healthy transition to adulthood.

An integral part of the Youth Services strategy also includes the designation of being recognized as a “Youth Friendly” Community. Play Works is a recognition program where communities can be designated as “Youth Friendly” by meeting a set of 16 criteria including options for play, quality of facilities, easy access to information about programs and services, community funding, school supports and equitable program opportunities for persons with disabilities.

Through youth engagement and collaboration, the City of Brantford and the County of Brant are well positioned to continue concerted efforts to ensure that all youth are supported and given the opportunity to benefit from the social and economic advantages the community has to offer.

A comprehensive Youth Strategy will be completed for Council’s approval by the end of 2016.

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Media Contact:

Maria Visocchi
Manager, Corporate Communications
City of Brantford
Brantford, Ontario
Office: 519.759.4150 Ext. 5754 | Cell: 519.732.9305
mvisocchi@brantford.ca