Saskatoon youth look to sort out homelessness – Saskatoon

A group of teens aged 15-18 have joined forces with the Saskatoon YMCA to bring awareness to homelessness in the city.

16-year old’s Aadid Shah and Tajwar Noor are two of 10 kids looking to make a difference in Saskatoon. They are dedicating their free time with the YMCA Community Action Network to raising awareness for homelessness.

“Homelessness can go from absolute homelessness where you don’t have a place to live, to concealed homelessness where homeless people are going from family members’ places to friends’ places just crashing for the night, or as people call it couch-hopping,” said Shah, a member of YCAN.

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The group organized an event for people dealing with homelessness where they are able to take a care package, and express concerns. It also hosted an opportunity for anyone willing to listen to learn more about the issue.

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“We’ve got people from OUT Saskatoon coming in. They’re going to be providing information. We’ve also got booths setup where we’re going to be providing information ourselves and brochures, that sort of thing,” said Noor, another member of the YCAN group.

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Noor is originally from Pakistan, and she said homelessness is a problem there as well, adding if the resources are available, then why not help.

“However when I came to Canada, there was lots of opportunities for me provided and I thought that if there’s a difference that I can make in the community, if there’s something that I can do to help out homelessness then I think I should take the initiative to do that and help out in the community,” said Noor.

Kessa Fillo has been with the YMCA for 8 years, running the YCAN program for the last two. She said seeing youth take the initiative to tackle issues like homelessness warms her heart.

“It’s a very fulfilling thing to see these young people stepping up and having the opportunity to and it’s a reason why I do what I do, and I’m just so grateful to be a part of it,” said Fillo.

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Aadid Shah immigrated to Saskatoon less than 5 months ago and tackling issues the city is facing today is his way of becoming a part of the community.

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“I personally wanted to integrate myself into the community, just find out what’s going on,” said Shah.

This project, along with the YCAN program has helped him become more involved.

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