Three new Foundrys to open on Vancouver Island, 7 elsewhere in province

Three new Foundrys to open on Vancouver Island, 7 elsewhere in province
The Victoria Foundry moved to a larger space in 2023.

The B.C. government has announced it will open 10 new Foundrys across the province, three of which will be on Vancouver Island.

Nanaimo, Port Alberni and Sooke-West Shore will be the locations of the new Island-based centres, and the others will be in Burnaby, Chilliwack, Quesnel, South Surrey, Vancouver, Vanderhoof and the West Kootenays.

Foundry‘s are centres for young people aged 12-24 to access supports for mental health and well-being, substance use, social support and services, navigation assistance and self-care.

There are 25 Foundry centres around the province currently, and these 10 will bring the total to 35.

“There’s nothing more important than helping kids and their families. That’s why we’re making a significant expansion in child and youth health and wellness supports so more young people can get connected to the services they need,” said Jennifer Whiteside, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions.

The B.C. government says the COVID-19 pandemic, global uncertainty and climate change affect young people and have resulted in an increase in depression and anxiety.

“Young people, now more than ever, desperately need safe spaces where they can access mental-health, physical-health, substance-use, and social services without feeling judged or stigmatized,” Steve Mathias, executive director of the Foundry said.

“It is imperative that we create supportive spaces that allow youth to express who they are without fear and live a good life on their terms. There is still a lot of work to be done, and Foundry will continue our unwavering commitment to revolutionize the health and wellness landscape for young people.”

The Foundry has operated in Victoria since 2018, when the Victoria Youth Clinic re-branded to become a Foundry location. The centre recently moved locations to move into a bigger space.

READ PREVIOUS: New Foundry Victoria space almost double in size from former

There are also three other Foundry centres on Vancouver Island, including Campbell River, Comox Valley and Port Hardy.

Laura BroughamLaura Brougham

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