Humboldt is one of four communities in Saskatchewan to host new Integrated Youth Services (IYS) sites designed to be an access point for various supports to people aged 12–25. The province made the announcement via a release on January 30.
In Humboldt, Partners Family Services was selected as the agency to head up the new service collective. The selection was made by John Howard Society of Saskatchewan (JHSS), the group coordinating the IYS sites in partnership with the Government of Saskatchewan. The three other successful candidates are the YWCA Regina in Regina, YMCA of Regina in Moose Jaw and the Sturgeon Lake First Nation Health Center.
"I'm pleased these communities will host Integrated Youth Services sites, making it easier for our young people to get the services they're looking for all in one location," Mental Health and Addictions Minister Tim McLeod said. "This is another step forward in our government's plan to better serve the needs of youth and their families with coordinated access to a variety of supports."
The sites will provide rapid access to integrated, evidence based, culturally safe youth targeted supports that focus on prevention and early intervention, says Pam Reimer with Integrated Youth Services at the John Howard Society.
“There will be a centre that will have localized services there,” Reimer says. “They will also be looking at bringing in partners from across the community or across the province that might be able to offer more specific or targeted services.”
The sites are meant to meet the needs of young people where they are at and when they require services. While the primary focus is regional service, any young person can access supports from any of the sites in the province. Young people have had a hand in the development of the services and processes involved in the sites, explains Reimer.
“The really exciting thing around integrated youth services is that it’s a system meant to support youth and created with our youth. We are fortunate to have eighteen youth from across the province working with us to ensure everything we are doing has our youth voice to make sure it meets the needs of our youth.”
Services offered are typically for mental health and addictions, peer supports, physical health, education, employment and training, cultural and traditional supports, and social and community services. IYS is a national and international movement, aimed at reimagining how youth and their caregivers find and access the resources, services and supports they need.
Agencies participating in or supporting the initiative include Health, Education, Social Services, Justice and Attorney General, Corrections, Policing and Public Safety, Advanced Education, Immigration and Career Training, Government Relations, and Parks, Culture and Sport.
Work on the sites is underway, with services to begin in 2024-25.