Downtown Toronto Centre to provide positive and comprehensive programs for local youth
TORONTO, Nov. 17, 2015 /CNW/ - The Yonge Street Mission (YSM) today announced it will be moving its iconic Evergreen Centre on Yonge Street to a new location at 365/367 Spadina Avenue by the end of 2017. The newly-renovated 24,000-square-foot site will be called The Yonge Street Mission Evergreen Centre for Street Youth and will offer expanded services designed to accommodate the needs of Toronto's street-involved youth and other vulnerable populations.
"The Board of Directors and I are thrilled to share the news that we have found the address of our new home," said Angie Draskovic, President and CEO of YSM. "For more than one hundred years, The Yonge Street Mission has been committed to breaking the cycle of poverty in Toronto. Our new location will allow us to continue to be in the heart of the city where we will provide comprehensive programs for youth who already live in downtown Toronto. Our team will provide day-programs that focus on creating better outcomes for youth and will allow us to work together with other agencies who share the same or similar goals."
Joe Cressy, Councillor, Ward 20, Trinity-Spadina said, "Addressing poverty and inequality is a significant priority of our collective work in Ward 20 - The Yonge Street Mission plays a critical role in working towards this in our downtown communities. As a standout non-profit organization, with longstanding and measurable experience, YSM is a group who I know is committed to working hard to support our youth in Toronto's downtown core. It is truly an honour to have their organization integrate their much-needed services into our community."
The news marks a significant milestone for YSM, which has operated as a non-profit, Christian-based organization out of its namesake property at 381 Yonge Street since 1896. Citing years of research and a pressing need for additional space to accommodate its expanding programming and services, the organization announced in July 2013, that it had decided to sell the historic building and acquire a facility better-suited to accommodating the changing needs of the people in the community.
The interior of the building will be completely renovated and the existing facade will be preserved. Incorporating smart and practical spaces that accommodate the community's needs are important components to the vision of the new YSM Evergreen Centre. It will provide the room needed to grow and will be designed with appropriate and dynamic spaces for expanding programming and services. Design and renovation of the new site will begin in 2016, with input from stakeholders including youth, to decide how the site should look and feel.
This day program site will complement a number of overnight and shelter facilities that exist downtown.
"We are planning for a smooth and seamless transition between sites," said Draskovic. "Our programming and services will continue uninterrupted while construction takes place over the next year and a half. I want to thank our tireless staff team, our partners, and generous donors for their commitment and shared vision as we've undergone this process."
About The Yonge Street Mission
The Yonge Street Mission is a recognized not-for-profit agency – which includes the Evergreen Centre – and has six different locations in Toronto's downtown core. These sites serve more than 12,000 unique individuals each year, including children, youth, families, seniors, and those who experience chronic poverty. Since 1896, our mandate has been to break down the cycles of social, spiritual, and economic poverty to create better outcomes for those we serve. The hope, healing, and encouragement that the Mission offers is based solely on individual need, regardless of colour, culture, economic status, gender identity, religion, sexual orientation or social condition.
Our six locations are:
- Evergreen Centre, 381 Yonge Street (soon to be The Yonge Street Mission Evergreen Centre for Street Youth, 365/367 Spadina Avenue)
- Christian Community Centre, 270 Gerrard Street East
- Genesis Place, 280 Gerrard Street East
- H.B. Martin Family Centre for Urban Education, 306 Gerrard Street East
- Double Take & TD Securities Computer Literacy Centre, 310 Gerrard Street East
- St. James Town, 225 Wellesley Street East
SOURCE Yonge Street Mission
For further information: Sally Ritchie, Manager, Marketing and Communications, The Yonge Street Mission, Email: [email protected], Office: 416-929-9614 x 4255, Mobile: 416-807-3086