Youth program needs donations


Directions Youth Services team leader John Kehler needs donations for homeless youth.
Photo by Dan Toulgoet, The Vancouver Courier

Adapted from The Vancouver Courier

Level 1

John Kehler works with young people.
These young people are ages 12 to 18.
They live on the street in Vancouver.
Life is very hard for them.

How the program works
Directions Youth Service tries to help.
The staff waits for the youth to come.
They wait to hear, “I want help.”
Then the youth get hot meals.
They can shower there.
They can wash their clothes.
They have lockers to keep their things safe.
There are some kennels for a few pets.

Other ways to help
Directions is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Staff give education and art programs.
They also offer sports programs.
Staff tries to build trust with the youth.
Then they help young people get help with their health.
Some go home. Others get a job. Some go back to school.
Others need a safe place to live.
Some young people need counselling.

The Vancouver Courier newspaper
The Courier wants to help.
June Stafford, the office manager, put an ad in the newspaper.
The ad asks for donations for the youth.
People can drop donations at their office before December 14,
at 1574 West Sixth Ave., from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

What they need
These are things the youth need:
• warm clothing, underwear and socks
• soap, shampoo, towels (new or used)
• shaving supplies, toothbrushes, toothpaste, deodorant
• sleeping bags, backpacks, sheets, blankets

Gift cards for a fast-food coffee shop
are nice Christmas gifts for these young people.
Stafford says, “When we’re all enjoying our turkey
at home with family, these kids
are on the street, cold and hungry.
It’s the least we can do.”

• kennels:  small safe places for a dog or cat
counselling:  helping people with problems, usually by talking with them