History of the Outreach Program

A Brief History

The Outreach Program, run by the Children’s Aid Society of the District of Thunder Bay and funded by the City of Thunder Bay, began in January 1988. The program idea originated from residential workers who were frustrated with the large number of youths in the city who were not accessing traditional services. These were youth at risk who were increasingly turning to drugs, alcohol, prostitution, violent relationships and criminal behaviour. A number of these individuals were pregnant teens or young parents. In conjunction with the Ministry of Social Services, the Children’s Aid Society held a Community Consultation with other community organizations in order to gather statistical information and share in recommendations for the at-risk youth population. Early stats (1988-1990) estimated that there were approximately two hundred youths living on the streets of the community of Thunder Bay at any given time.