Kenora Youth Wellness Hub Welcomes Educator

Kenora Youth Wellness Hub Welcomes an Educator to the Team
Posted on 04/22/2020
Kenora Youth WellnessKenora Youth Wellness Hub Team(Kenora – April 22, 2020) Youth in Kenora now have another person supporting them at the Kenora Youth Wellness Hub, thanks to a partnership with the Kenora Catholic District School Board.

Certified Teacher, Jeff Richards, from St. Thomas Aquinas High School, is joining the Kenora Youth Wellness Hub as an Education Advisor. Richards will provide educational support services to at-risk youth aged 12-25, with the primary goal of helping students remain in school or return to their school.

Jackie Franck is the Manager of the Kenora Youth Wellness Hub. “The Education Advisor plays an important role in providing the wrap around integrated service experience that we are working to provide for young people in our community,” said Franck.

Derek Haime, Director of Education, talks about the initiative. “This partnership is near and dear to my heart because we know the best outcome for children is when they can stay in school and graduate. I’m extremely pleased to be able to partner with the team at the Kenora Youth Wellness Hub. When we heard about the Hub opening in Kenora, we knew we needed to get involved. It’s estimated that at any given time, there are between 100 – 500 children of school age in Kenora not engaged in a school. This partnership will support our youth in connecting with Jeff Richards, who is a caring, dedicated and accomplished teacher. Jeff will meet students where they are and help them map out a customized pathway to success. We want our children to be happy and discover success, and we have great confidence in Jeff being able to help students navigate back into education services.”

Richards’s role at the Kenora Youth Wellness Hub is multifaceted and evolving. He will be working with clients to help them complete their Ontario Secondary School Diploma or Certificate; access online learning opportunities including college and/or university courses, cooperative education programs, apprenticeship programs; improve their literacy and numeracy skills; and enter the workplace or reconnect with their school community. There is an entry point for every person. When he’s not at the Hub, Richards will be building awareness of the program through community networks and partnerships and creating and gathering materials and resources.

“I really love the ‘outside of the box’ idea,” said Jeff Richards. “The Education Advisor position sparked my interest because I enjoy helping students and being able to provide new opportunities to support individuals in overcoming barriers to gain confidence and success no matter what pathway they choose or school they want to attend.”

Richards began the Education Advisor role on February 18 and will be at the Hub from 12:30 – 3:15 PM on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays as part of the Hub’s soft launch startup.

“I’m excited to be part of the Kenora Youth Wellness Hub,” said Richards. “There are four very motivated staff members who make everyone feel welcome as soon as they walk through the front door. It’s a one-stop-shop for all the service providers under one roof with wrap-around support, and understanding, empathy and kindness.”

In February 2017, the Ontario government announced funding for integrated service hubs across the province to address gaps in the youth service system. Ten hubs are now being established to serve as fully integrated “one-stop-shops” to support 12,000 youth across the province, and address their needs related to mental health, substance use, primary care, education training, employment training, housing, and other community and social services.

The Kenora Youth Wellness Hub is located at 120 Main Street and currently has over 20 partners contributing its services. Kenora has the only Youth Wellness Hub in Northwestern Ontario. Learn more at
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