Do Youth Matter in Thunder Bay?

Youth Centres Thunder Bay (Youth TBay) are working hard to save their youth centre
Youth Centres Thunder Bay (Youth TBay) are working hard to save their youth centre.

In a City with a ‘Giant Heart’ Do Youth Matter?

THUNDER BAY – EDITORIAL – Thunder Bay City Administration seems to have a need for a used dishwasher, a used fridge and stove and used knives and forks. Administration is looking to scoop the equipment used at Youth Centres Thunder Bay, that includes some two year old computers, and other equipment that is used to keep the centre located in the downtown Fort William Business District going.

Youth Centres Thunder Bay started as a pilot project with the City of Thunder Bay, Wasaya Group and Youth TBay as a public private partnership. The 18 month pilot project to run the centre has ended.

Youth Centres Thunder Bay is working hard to fund-raise and keep the doors open for the growing number of youth who access the centre.

When Youth Centres Thunder Bay started, City Council voted to fund the project at a cost of $120,000 over 18 months.

Administration is now recommending $5,000 for six months for the youth.

Youth Centres Thunder Bay had approached the city looking for interim funding of $25,000.

The youth are working hard to save their youth centre, they have been holding car washes, today they are at the Bay and Algoma Busker’s Street Fair selling amazing food.

The youth are pouring their heart, soul and time into the youth centre.

Mayor Hobbs comments, “I did attend the last youth fundraiser at Canadian Tire and made my cash donation. I don’t need a used fridge or utensils. Rather embarrassing if you ask me”.

City Manager Tim Commisso has been supportive of the Youth Centre initiative, and in recent discussions has suggested Fort William Gardens, and other buildings as possible venues.

Right now the City has few resources in place for youth in the downtown Fort William area, which actually has a fairly high number of families. Taking away the Youth Centre would impact those youth.

In a city where many say the youth are our future, City Council will have the opportunity to clearly demonstrate if that is true or not on Monday night.

One hopes that the message from Council will be that youth matter.

Stay tuned.

James MurrayCity Administration

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