Peer Support: Just Be You

Helping Youth Since 2014

Working in conjunction with CMHA-Halton, ROCK, Support and Housing Halton, ADAPT, Oak Park Neighbourhood Centre, and the United Way, SO!SO! launched the Just Be You program in 2014.

How Just Be You Works

Youth-led and youth-focused, Just Be You provides youth living with mental health issues a place to go, hang out, and have fun—without judgment, without stigma—on their terms. It allows them to just be youth. While doing that they also learn coping and resiliency skills, make social connections, and learn about resources.

Each session is led by a youth facilitator and youth coordinator, and participants decide how they would like to spend their time together. Whether it’s movie nights, art, games, writing, get-togethers in the community, or something else, it will help them to feel connected, safe, and just be youth.

“You are saving lives.”

Just Be You Participant

Just Be You Helps Youth Build:

 

  • Resiliency
  • Self-confidence and self-esteem
  • Positive social connections
  • Coping strategies
  • Connections to services, resources, and tools

[ why participate ]

Just Be You increases overall mental wellness in youth through a combination of peer support and social recreation that encourages young people to explore their strengths and learn wellness strategies.

Want to participate?

who

Youth ages 15 to 25

when

Fridays from 7pm-10pm

where

Oak Park Neighbourhood Centre (2200 Sawgrass Drive, Oakville)

how

To get started, email justbeyoupeers@gmail.com or call 289-291-5434.

The Impact Seen from Peer Support

Peer support is associated with: reductions in hospitalizations for mental health problems, reductions in ‘symptom’ distress, improvements in social support and in quality of life, and increased attendance at school.

The success of the program for youth has been recognized by the youth who participate as well as the mental health and health organizations in our community.

In speaking with the youth who attend Just Be You every Friday night, the program is making a difference in their lives. They are feeling more positive, are doing better in school, are learning things about themselves, see the program as a motivator to get out of the house even when it has been a bad week, and are feeling less at risk.

“JBY has impacted my life positively as I have learned to cope with stress and anxiety. It has helped me make friends and better support others it has also helped me be more social.”

 

“JBY has helped me discover more potential in myself. I was also thankful for JBY as something to look forward to.”

JBY Participants

Interested in Starting a Just Be You Program in Your Community?

If your community or organization is interested in starting a JBY peer support program, we’d love for you to contact us about how to bring this into fruition.