Cariboo Family Enrichment Centre Community Youth and Family Navigator Program
Age group: Late childhood (7-11); Adolescence (12-17); Young adult (18-24)
Gender: Mixed (male and female)
Population served: Gang-involved (and/or at risk)
Topic: Academic issues; Aggressive/violent behaviours; Alcohol and/or drug use; Antisocial/deviant behaviours; Gang and/or related criminal activities; Social/economic disadvantage
Setting: Rural/remote area; Social services setting
Location: British Columbia
Number of completed Canadian outcome evaluation studies: 0
Continuum of intervention: Secondary crime prevention; Tertiary crime prevention
To address gang-involved youth and crime reduction in the South Cariboo Region of BC, the Cariboo Family Enrichment Centre (CFEC) hired a Community Youth and Family Navigator (Navigator) position. The Navigator works with gang-involved and at-risk youth age 9-30 in the community of 100 Mile House.
The Navigator encompasses strengths-based assessment and planning, connection, education, collaboration, linkage facilitation, increasing resiliency factors, providing gang-awareness initiatives, advocacy, addressing risk-factors, and follow up.
Participation in a gang reduces a gang members’ connections to other prosocial activities and they may cut ties to prosocial groups and organizations such as family, friends, schools and religious communities in order to focus more intensively on gang participation. The Navigator meets face-to-face with youth who need assistance navigating services to identify and meet their needs, so the youth are not reliant on support from gangs.
The youth’s needs will be addressed by connection to individual assessment, family support, individual/group therapy, family therapy, mental health counselling, mentoring, drug treatment, outreach, case management, service referrals, recreational opportunities, employment, cultural opportunities, and Indigenous and traditional cultural awareness. The goal is to decrease the likelihood of youth gang involvement by providing alternatives and accessible social opportunities.
The main goals of the Cariboo Family Enrichment Centre Community Youth and Family Navigator program are to reduce risk for gang-involvement of youth by:
- Connecting youth to relevant community services and supports;
- Advocating on behalf of the youth for increased services ands supports; and
- Connecting the families of youth to relevant community services and supports
Mixed gender youth aged 9-30 who are:
- Involved with the criminal justice system
- Youth at-risk
- Using or dealing drugs
- Association to delinquent or gang-involved peers
- Disconnected from school
- Disconnected from family
Youth may self-refer or be referred by another agency in the community such as School District 27, RCMP, Indigenous Bands, Interior Health, or the Ministry of Children and Family Development, among others. Referrals may also come from families who identify members that are at-risk or gang-involved. Youth are eligible for the Program if they meet the markers noted above.
The core component of this Program is working directly with youth to increase their access to services and ability to overcome barriers. The Navigator will assist youth to make connections to supports available to them in the community to reduce their reliance on support from gangs, or other gang-involved youth.
Interventions are directly related to reducing barriers to supportive factors such as employment, mental health, education, physical health, secure housing, positive role models, reconnection to Indigenous culture, and food security, etc.
The Navigator is available 35 hours per week (Monday-Friday, 9am-4pm), and the Program has been funded by the Gun and Gang Violence Action Fund for 2019/2020, 2020/2121, and 2021/2022.
Some of the critical elements for the implementation of this program or initiative include the following:
- Organizational requirements: Lead organization should have a strong and stable management team / executive / leadership; ensure proper analysis of community needs and knowledge of other existing services, resources and organizations; have experience in fundraising; be able to manage logistical elements which enable the program to happen; have solid skills in outreach, intake and assessment, case planning, program delivery and post-program follow-up; have written policies regarding cultural competence, parent involvement, privacy of personal information, client complaints and client feedback mechanisms.
- Partnerships: The success of Cariboo Family Enrichment Centre Community Youth and Family Navigator Program depends on its partnerships with Cariboo Chilcotin Child Development Centre Association, 100 Mile House RCMP, School District 27, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Williams Lake,100 Mile House Ministry of Children and Family Development, 100 Mile House Child and Youth Mental Health, Canim Lake Band, 100 Mile House Canadian Mental Health Association and Interior Health.
- Training and technical assistance: Bachelor Degree in Child and Youth Care, Social Work or related field and 5 years of experience required for Navigator position.
- Risk assessment tools: Limited information on this topic.
- Materials & resources: Client information and notes kept on Case Administrative Management System.
The most recognized classification systems of evidence-based crime prevention programs have classified this program or initiative as follows:
- Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development: Not applicable.
- Crime Solutions/OJJDP Model Program Guide: Not applicable.
- SAMHSA's National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices: Not applicable.
- Coalition for Evidence-Based Policy: Not applicable.
Gathering Canadian Knowledge
Canadian Implementation Sites
The Navigator program has been implemented by the Cariboo Family Enrichment Centre in 100 Mile House, BC, beginning in 2019/2020 and funded until 2021/2022.
Main Findings from Canadian Outcome Evaluation Studies
No information available.
At this time, the Navigator is funded for three years, until the end of fiscal year 2021/2022, at $58,787 per year, for a total of $173,361.
As of the end of the fiscal year 2020/2021, the cost-per-youth was $3,114.96.
Anderson, J., & Larke, S. (2009). The Sooke Navigator project: Using community resources and research to improve local service for mental health and addictions. Mental Health in Family Medicine, 6, 21-28.
Chettleburgh, M. C. (2007). Young thugs: Inside the dangerous world of Canadian street gangs. Harper Collins Publishers.
Dunbar, L. (2017). Youth gangs in Canada: A review of current topics and issues. Public Safety Canada. https://www.publicsafety.gc.ca/cnt/rsrcs/pblctns/2017-r001/2017-r001-en.pdf
Lupick, T. (2015, February 6). Vancouver coastal health expands health navigating mental-health services, cuts long time advocates. The Straight. https://www.straight.com/news/822331/vancouver-coastal-health-expands-help-navigating-mental-health-services-cuts-long-time-advocates
Ngo, H. V., Calhoun, A., Worthington, C., Pyrch, T., & Este, D. (2017). Unravelling identities and belonging: Criminal gang involvement of youth from immigrant families. International Migration & Integration, 18, 63-84. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12134-015-0466-5
Sersli, S., Salazar, J., & Lozano, N. (2010). Gang prevention for new immigrant and refugee youth in BC. http://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/public-safety-and-emergency-services/crime-prevention/community-crime-prevention/publications/gang-prevention-immigrant-refugee.pdf
Snider., C., Wiebe, F., Mahmood, J., Christensen, T., & Kehler, K. (n.d.). Community assessment of a gang exit strategy for Winnipeg, Manitoba. Gang Action Interagency Network (GAIN) and University of Manitoba. https://gainmb.files.wordpress.com/2011/03/gain-report1.pdf
Wortley, S., & Tanner, J. (2006). Immigration, social disadvantage and urban youth gangs: Results of a Toronto-area study. Canadian Journal of Urban Research, 15(2), 18-37.
For more information on this program, contact:
Cariboo Family Enrichment Centre
1-486 Birch Avenue
100 Mile House, BC, V0K 2E0
Telephone: (250) 395 5155
Record Updated On - 2022-01-17
- Date modified: