Back to School with Covenant House Vancouver

Add a Comment by Guest Author

The #CHVCatchUp is a monthly series featuring the latest updates and news from Covenant House Vancouver (“CHV”). Miss604 is proud to be the Official Blog Partner of CHV. This month’s post has been written by Jason Bosher.

Back to School with Covenant House Vancouver

With your support, the young people of today can become the community leaders of tomorrow.

About Covenant House Vancouver

Covenant House Vancouver (CHV) offers a continuum of services that incorporate evidence-informed theories and practices to ensure that they care for the whole person — mind, body, and spirit. Services and programs range from Outreach and our Drop-In Centre to short- and long-term housing and support services, like counselling, that enable youth to successfully transition to independence. CHV staff work with youth individually to develop case plans that are tailored to each youth’s specific needs and goals.

One way that CHV helps youth pursue the futures that they envision for themselves is by enabling them to receive the education that they require to make their visions a reality.

CHV is over 90% privately funded, which means that youth who come to CHV thrive because of community support. As such, CHV would like to share a few stories to illustrate how it truly takes a community to raise a young person.

Meet David

David is a refugee whose parents were killed by rebels, in his homeland. He was hidden by family and made his way to Canada on a student visa…

David is a refugee whose parents were killed by rebels, in his homeland. He was hidden by family and made his way to Canada on a student visa.

David started his life in Canada with nothing. He found CHV and entered the Crisis Program.

David learned English, he went back to school, and after six months, he entered the Rights of Passage program. Here he learned life skills that would equip him for the next part of his journey.

David is now in the Hollyburn program and is now a permanent resident. He has graduated from the Community Support Worker program and works casual shifts. David also works at Deltaport. He is applying for scholarships as David wants to be a heavy equipment operator.

“I stared from zero. Everything I now know, I learned at Covenant House. They are a family to me—they taught me life skills, gave me direction, taught me what was right and wrong in Canada, they helped me get a job and go back to school.”

Meet George

George had a dream. He wanted to be a counsellor…

But, his dream didn’t fit with his parents’ plans for him. They had aspirations for their son to be a doctor or a mechanic. In an attempt to make their son concede and go along with their wishes, they restricted his TV, Internet, and even food access, so that he could not engage in his post secondary dreams. “They did everything to try and destroy my dreams.” George said.

Wanting to pursue his dream, George became estranged from his family.

George’s first engagement with CHV came through interactions with their Outreach team. The team referred him to the Crisis Program. While in the Crisis Program, he participated in cognitive behavioural therapy and regularly met with counsellors. He eventually moved into the Rights of Passage program, and has now transitioned into Hollyburn. He was initially connected to Foundry for additional support, who, in turn, connected him to a clinic closer to his home.

Thanks to generous donors who fund educational opportunities at CHV, George received a scholarship and is now in the Child and Youth Care program at Douglas College. He is on his way of fulfilling his dream of becoming a counsellor.

Meet Amalie

You have to leave everything and everyone that you know behind…

Imagine, you’re a teen who has just graduated from high school. You love your city, and you have your network of friends. Your father is known in the community as a supporter of women’s rights. Then things change. Your dad becomes a person of interest to a group in power. Suddenly, every night, one of your siblings has to stand watch, while the rest of you sleep. One day, there is a direct threat against you. What do you do?

Amalie found refuge in CHV’s Rights of Passage program. She believed in the importance of education, but there were many hurdles, such as a new language, technology, and the fact that her high school certification was not recognized here, so she had to take courses from grade 10 to 12 over again.

Amalie aspires to become a dental hygienist because she know that newcomers to Canada often suffer from poor dental hygiene and she wants to make a difference.

Amalie is one course away from being able to apply to university. A detailed account of Amalie’s journey is available on CHV’s website.

Back to School with Covenant House Vancouver

Youth who access CHV’s programs and services are resilient and highly motivated, but require community support to succeed. There are many ways in which you can support youth on their educational journeys: you can make a monetary donation to one of CHV’s programs, you can help youth with school supplies and electronics, and you can get involved by becoming a mentor.

Comments are closed on this post
Also on