News Local

New classrooms for New Path Youth & Family Services

From left, Educational Assistant Kelly Reginella, teacher Crystal Benjafield, and New Path Care & Treatment Worker Jess Carriere, in front of a new classroom under construction, near Cookstown. Submitted/New Path Youth & Family Services

From left, Educational Assistant Kelly Reginella, teacher Crystal Benjafield, and New Path Care & Treatment Worker Jess Carriere, in front of a new classroom under construction, near Cookstown. Submitted/New Path Youth & Family Services

Simcoe County – Thanks to capital funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation and Ministry of Children and Youth Services, New Path Youth and Family Services is building new classrooms at its residential treatment centre on 5 Sideroad at Line 13 in Bradford West Gwillimbury, just south of Cookstown.

Construction is currently underway, and the new classrooms are set to open in early November.

“We are very thankful to the Ontario Trillium Foundation and the Ministry for their support of this project. We’re moving from portables that are at least 30 years old and showing signs of age, to brand new classrooms,” says Gordon Bain, Residential Program Manager at New Path. “This much-needed renovation will ensure that our most vulnerable youth have a comfortable place to learn and grow.”

The new classrooms have an area to accommodate group work, and a quiet space for students needing some time alone. The classrooms will also incorporate new technology, with space for 3 whiteboards and computer upgrades. Better access to technology will allow New Path to better meet students’ needs, Individual Education Plan requirements, and prepare students for their eventual return to mainstream schools.

“I’m looking forward to a new environment,” says a 14-year-old New Path Residential client. “I am starting my high school experience in the new classroom, so I would like to get the full experience.”

The Residential Program is located on 25 acres, and is home to Youth between the ages of 12 and 17 who are experiencing significant social, emotional and behavioural difficulties, and who require an intensive 24-hour therapeutic setting. A typical residential placement ranges from 6 to 12 months.

“The comprehensive mental health services provided to adolescents at the site have been widely acclaimed over the years by the youth served, their families and caregivers, and the professional community at large,” says Glen Newby, New Path Youth and Family Services CEO. “New Path is the Lead Agency for Moving on Mental Health, and I am particularly pleased to have both the Ontario Trillium Foundation and the Ministry of Children and Youth Services support an improved educational environment for some of Simcoe County’s most vulnerable youth.”

The funding includes a capital grant of $150,000 from the Trillium Foundation, and $140,000 from the Ministry.

To learn more about New Path, donate, or get involved, see www.newpath.ca or New Path Youth & Family Services on Facebook.com.