Our guest on January 17th was Annie Smith, Executive Director of the McCreary Centre Society a not-for-profit organization committed to improving the health of BC youth through research, evaluation and community-based projects. 
Their best-known research is the BC Adolescent Health Study (AHS), which is the most extensive study of the health of BC youth. Data from the study is used by government agencies, communities, schools, and health professionals to plan programs and services for youth.
Annie spoke to us about their latest study, Searching for a place: The health and well-being of homeless and unstably housed youth in BC. Participants were 838 youth aged 12-27 who were homeless, unstably housed or at risk of homelessness -  those without a home, in temporary accommodation, on the street, couch surfing, staying in an SRO or shelter.  Key recommendations from the findings include:
  • More youth safe houses and shelters
  • Self-referral options for youth
  • Services for those who become homeless at a young age
  • More outreach workers and portable health services; and
  • Support to obtain ID and substance abuse and sexual health treatment.
We are grateful for the important work done by McCreary, and we look forward to having Annie return to speak to us again, after the release of the AHS in February.