Programs and Services
Cultural Connector Initiative
The Cultural Connector Initiative engages with local African Nova Scotian communities to identify needs, service improvements and cultural safe as well as responsive support for children youth and families. The initiative provides community collaboration to support and equitable access to culturally safe support through the Department of Community Services (DCS) Prevention and Early intervention.
In collaboration with Community INC. This program gives youth aged 18-26 access to life skills, work skills and educational opportunities that would enable them to find work. Edge also acts as an advocate and link to employers and jobs in the community for these youth.
The Portal Youth Association is a key partner of the Homeless No More initiative (HNM). By collaborating with local organizations between West Hants to Digby, NS, Homeless No More works to put the best-informed data and sector direction in action to advocate for policy and structural changes that impact the state of rural homelessness.
Life Pathways is for youth who are 16 to 19 years to engage in purposeful recreation, experiential learning, personal development and community services. The intent is to have fun exploring self, working together and experiencing a variety of work and service settings.
The Portal's Supportive Living Homes are located in Kentville, Middleton and Windsor. Each home is safe, supportive and hope to give youth a sense of belonging. The Supportive Living Program is great for those who are not able to live at home or if it is unsafe for them too. Youth have access to basic needs, a trusting community, group meals, house meetings, and the opportunity to move forward. The invitation is there for youth to take charge and take steps into a more hopeful future.
Prevention Design Toolkit
This toolkit was designed for individuals and organizations that are pursuing a prevention programming mindset. The aim is to address the unique needs youth have when preparing and delivering a program. The hope is that a network of youth-serving organizations in the Annapolis Valley will reduce homelessness, mental health challenges, involvement in crime, sexual exploitation, family conflict, addictions, and substance use/abuse. This toolkit was produced by many contributors that include but are not limited to the Portal Youth Outreach Association, SchoolsPlus, Nova Scotia Health Authority, Chrysalis House, Department of Community Services, Town of Kentville Recreation Department, Nova Scotia Health Board, Kaileigh Skinner, and Annapolis Valley Regional Centre of Education.
Each Summer and when we are able during School breaks, The Portal provides opportunities to actively engage with local recreation options, and experiential learning, and to participate in service projects in the community. Depending on the year, we offer programming for youth who are 12 years and older as well as for youth 16 years and older.
The excellent outreach staff work to connect with youth that are at risk or challenged with navigating accessing what they need in their community. We have a particular priority on youth that are currently experiencing homelessness. We work with them to navigate their current situations by providing dynamic support that connects to multiple agency partners in order to creat a community of support for the youth.