Ensuring Youth Get the Help They Need, When They Need It

The Youth Agency Collaboration

YESS, in collaboration with 25+ youth serving agencies (and growing) across Edmonton in the Youth Agency Collaboration (YAC), are already working together to create a connected continuum of care that ensures youth get the help they need, when they need it.

This means safer spaces, trained help, holistic wellbeing support, and bridge transitional housing that are all accessible 24/7 and in the communities where youth live.



Created in 2019 to collaborate and share experiences, information, and ideas to improve outcomes for youth.

  • Work together to build a strategic, cost-effective, and integrated continuum of complex care for youth
  • Streamline and coordinate intake, holistic assessment, and evaluation using a shared data system
  • Eliminate the need to compete for funding and build stronger connections between partners


What We’ve Learned

Working together since its inception, YAC partners found common themes and needs across their organizations from the voices of youth and youth workers:

  • Youth need the right help at the right time
  • Youth have better results when they face fewer barriers to supports and services
  • Small, community supports for youth and families are best
  • Building 1:1 trusting relationships is key
  • We don’t need to be one, we just need to act as one
Edmonton’s Collaborative Youth Strategy

The Youth Agency Collaboration has developed the following strategy to ensure that we are strategically focusing on the holistic wellbeing of young people in a coordinated and connected way that allows each community agency to address the needs of the youth in their community while still acting as one continuum of care.

An Innovative Implementation: “Youth Community Support Centres”*

One of the priority YAC innovations is creating community-based 24/7 crisis intervention, intake, and holistic wellbeing assessment services that are co-located with resource hubs for youth across Edmonton.


*Naming is functional and utilitarian for communication and concept purposes and the “centre” does not need to be a completely new entity but could be the addition of the crisis intake component to existing youth resource centres or Integrated Youth Services Hubs

Read the full Case for Support here