The Rogers Achievement Centre is a transitional education model designed to engage street involved youth in academic studies outside of the traditional classroom setting. For some youth, an alternative method of learning is required in order to achieve success academically. The school is based on the philosophy that all students can experience success and that some can graduate in a non-traditional academic environment. R.A.C. provides full time course instruction with a licensed teacher through a partnership with Lester B. Pearson High School of the Ottawa Catholic School Board. The teacher provides assistance for all high school courses, GED preparation, co-op courses, and school registration as well as provides the students with an opportunity to set goals and complete their high school studies. R.A.C. has a social support worker who encourages, motivates and assists youth in an attempt to ensure success through problem solving, as well as a literacy support worker who helps any students needing assistance with reading or writing. The Rogers Achievement Centre is beneficial in that youth who are not successful in a traditional high school setting have the opportunity to graduate and go on to College, University or to choose a career path.
Literacy Support Worker
Phone 613 230 4663
Students Taking On Prevention (STOP)
Operation Come Home operates a preventive educational program called STOP, the “Fork in the Road Tour“. This project is designed to educate and prevent high school students from dropping out of school and leaving home. The project provides students with an introductory video on “street life” and an opportunity for discussion regarding issues faced by homeless youth. The project is designed to illustrate to youth that leaving home and dropping out of school is not as much “fun” as it may appear to be. The STOP project is beneficial in that it prevents youth from making wrong decisions by providing them with crucial information that could ultimately save lives.
Through research done with our clients, Operation Come Home knows that the majority of street-involved youth experience high-risk situations while they are on the street. They are involved in the consumption of illicit drugs, they trade sex for personal gain such as drugs, shelter, food and money and they have criminal records. Although both males and females are at risk of victimization, there is some compelling evidence to show that females are at a greater risk of negative experiences related to their past and current practices. Additionally, the results show that the females surveyed use harm reduction services in Ottawa more often than the males. However, the females are engaging in more harmful practices including the use of hard drugs, involvement in the sex trade, experience more victimization and are on average three years younger than their male counterparts.
Because of this, we wanted to produce a thought-provoking prevention video that today’s youth could relate to – edgy, graphic, and intentionally “scary”. A video that would open up an honest dialogue that would expose the questions that no one wants to ask, and give frank answers about the realities of street life. We call it “The STOP Project” – Students Taking on Prevention – because we know how strong peer pressure is, for good and bad. The intention is to educate high school aged youth so that they can help each other overcome the pressure to make bad choices that could lead them to the streets.
The final product is in five parts – the stories of how five youth end up on the street. The themes include parental neglect, drugs, questioning of sexuality, the pressure to be popular, making alternative choices and the true nature of life on the street. Sarah, Jake, Kate, James and Samantha all have choices to make in their lives – and must live with the consequences.
The “Fork in the Road” Tour opens up the discussion of the consequences of the choices we all have to make. Trained facilitators present the video and engage the students in discussion about what they have seen, how it relates to their lives, and what can be done to encourage positive choices. These one-hour presentations will be high energy and interactive, giving the students ample time to express their views and address their concerns.
Phone 613 230 4663