Programs and services for school-aged children (Kindergarten through Grade 12)
The Youth Settlement Services (YSS) program provides a variety of program opportunities and activities for newcomer school-aged children on PEI. All of these are free of charge and registration is required.
Social and educational workshops for students
The YSS program develops a number of social and educational workshops for school-aged children and youth. These workshops combine different activities and information sessions exploring age-specific themes that create an educational and inclusive space for immigrant students to meet, learn and have fun.
The Boys Council program is a support group for male immigrant students focused on addressing the diverse and complex needs of teenage boys. The Boys Council teaches valuable life skills and creates an environment where boys feel comfortable addressing any personal issues they may be having.
The Program includes a variety of sessions working on skill-building and community involvement. The group members take part in an overnight retreat that includes a series of workshops and educational modules. Topics are chosen based on identified trends and client needs, and may include: Media Literacy, LGBTQ+ Youth, Safe Sex, Team Morale Building, Healthy Relationships, Drugs and Alcohol, Bullying and Peer Pressure, and Anti-Discrimination.
Designed by One Circle Foundation, The Girls Circle program is a structured support group for adolescent girls. It is designed to foster self-esteem, help girls maintain connections, counter trends of self-doubt, and allow for genuine self-expression.
The Girls Circle is designed for girls between 9 and 18 years of age. Trained Youth Settlement staff members organize and lead the sessions. The Girls Circle content is delivered in a consistent format with verbal and experiential activities and covers age-appropriate, gender-relevant themes, and strengths-based strategies. Themes may include Body Image, Honoring Our Diversity, Expressing My Individuality, Friendship, and more.
The YSS Summer Program for students focuses on Canadian life skills, social support, and summertime fun. It gives participants the chance to practice their English in an informal setting, learn about Canadian social norms, and learn more about Canada.
The students participate in scheduled activities such as art instruction, environmental studies, physical activity, and outings to historical, educational, and recreational venues. YSS also offers an overnight camping experience for teens.
Enrollment preference for the Summer Program is given to refugees and newly arrived student clients.
Youth sport assistance
YSS helps low-income clients apply for funding to enable children and youth to participate in sports programs in PEI throughout the year. The funding comes from programs such as Kidsport PEI, Canadian Tire Jumpstart Program, and grants received to support specific sports involvement for children and youth.
Newcomer families who are in a low-income category as determined by their GST/HST Credit Notices, or Canada Child Tax Benefit Notices, can inquire about these funding programs through a YSS worker.
YSS team members create programming to eliminate barriers in sports and engage more newcomer youth in physical activity. The programming has a variety of proven benefits including supporting mental well-being.
The YSS team routinely pursues opportunities to offer additional programming to newcomer students. These may be in partnership with other community organizations.