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Supporting Guelph’s most vulnerable youth

Wyndham House is a charitable organization that works to prevent, reduce and end youth homelessness in the city of Guelph and Wellington County, Ontario.

Each year, the organization provides critical housing supports and associated services to over 449 homeless and at-risk youth across four sites, which include a 14-bed emergency shelter, two 8-bed long-term transitional housing residences and a Youth Service Hub.

Each site is designed specifically for youth aged 16 to 25, offering barrier-free access to housing, food, healthcare services and other supports like life skills training, supportive guidance and community referrals.

“Wyndham House began as a single program back in 1973 and has grown to 12 core programs across four locations,” says Kim Evershed, Fundraising & Communications Coordinator for Wyndham House. “We support the immediate needs of the youth who come to us for help, but also work to supply opportunities.”

Each day, Wyndham House provides more than 100 healthy, nutritious meals across all their program sites. They rely on donations to purchase the groceries required to ensure that the youth who come to them get the nutrition they need to move from crisis to stability.

“Our Eat to Succeed program allows us to reach out to community partners, such as the Gay Lea Foundation, to collaborate with us to support the food security needs of the youth in our programs,” says Evershed.

In November 2019, Wyndham House did just that, applying to the Gay Lea Foundation for support. The Foundation responded with a $4,000 grant, making the co-operative’s charitable organization the official Food Security Partner of Wyndham House in June 2020.

“Gay Lea Foods has been a proud part of the Guelph community for many years and we’re pleased to invest in the health and wellbeing of the vulnerable youth here through this partnership with Wyndham House,” says Foundation Chair Janet Ringelberg.

“It’s been a challenging few months and the donation from the Gay Lea Foundation has been so supportive,” says Evershed, who notes that Wyndham House has been supporting an additional 100 youth with food security, critical services and supports since the Canadian onset of COVID-19 in March.

“Our youth thank you!”

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To best help homeless and food insecure youth in Guelph during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Wyndham House Youth Shelter located at 18 Norwich St. E. is now open 24 hours a day and all meals are provided.

The downtown youth hub is temporarily closed to allow for staffing reallocation to support the expanded service hours at the youth emergency shelter.

 For more information call 519-837-3892.

 


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