Big Brothers Big sisters thrives at Harmony Centre

Harmony Centre has been home to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Grey Bruce & Western Simcoe (BBBSGBWS) since 2016, and in that time, the organization has tripled in size and reach.

According to Executive Director Beth Aubrey, much of this success can be attributed to a strong volunteer network and a deep commitment to the transformative power of mentoring. But it also has to do with an expansion of services that is meeting the changing needs or our community.

“This year, BBBSGBWS has seen a sharp rise in youth seeking services while simultaneously experiencing a drop in volunteer and donor acquisition,” she says. “This has had a tremendous impact on how the agency operates, and how we work to reach those youth and families most in need.”

As a result of these challenges, the agency is sending out a call to action, requesting donations and volunteer support.

Aubrey believes in providing preventative services to youth and families that have a generational impact. These services include a growing youth council, outdoor wellness program, group skill building programs, as well as traditional one-to-one and in-school mentoring programs.

“Each of our services are aimed at creating a lasting impact on the lives of some of the most vulnerable and at-risk youth across our community,” she says.

Harmony Centre has played a role in this process. “I can’t say enough good things about this place,” says Aubrey, pointing out that Harmony Centre values, as social enterprise, are a perfect fit for their organization.

“The low overhead we’ve been able to maintain, thanks to subsidized accommodation, has helped us deliver more with less,” she says. “Our accessible presence at the heart of the community is also an important aspect of our residency here.”

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