2021 Annual Report

Alex

(Roofs for Youth)

Finally feeling comfortable and confident in themselves.

After getting kicked out of multiple homes for property damage, Alex* was taken in by CJHS’s Roofs for Youth.

This housing program offers two residences, Windsor Park and Raido House, and scattered sites housing for independent living. The Roofs for Youth staff team recommended to Alex that they would benefit from living in a communal home. He agreed and they settled in at Windsor Park, a nine-bedroom home for youth aged 18 to 24 years old. Alex felt a sense of comfort with the Windsor Park staff, which made them feel they could be themselves.
“I think that Alex’s biggest accomplishment was starting to use they/them pronouns, because, for a long time, they weren’t sure what they wanted to do,” says Tamara, a Windsor Park staff member. “They thought they had to transition fully and be a girl; they didn’t know being non-binary or using they/them pronouns was an option.”

In 2021, there were 993 instances skill development support was offered by case management

Feeling comfortable in their body helped Alex to focus on communicating when they were frustrated, instead of reacting by damaging property.

“We were really good at fostering those conversations of ‘if you do property damage, we are going to be upset, but we are not going to kick you out,’” says Tamara.

The staff would often ask Alex why they would want to damage property, what was making them frustrated, and what was an alternative to property damage.

When Alex was frustrated because they wanted to go camping but couldn’t, the Windsor Park staff built a fort with them in the living room. This helped them release their anger and to understand there were alternatives to property damage when things didn’t go their way.

Moments like this during Alex’s first year at Windsor Park helped them realize there are other ways to express emotions.

Now, having learnt to deal with their frustrations about life in a healthier way, Alex is loving, happy and comfortable in who they are, and no longer feels the need to be disruptive.

*Client names have been changed for staff and client confidentiality

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