Nanaimo Youth Resilience Strategy

The City of Nanaimo has been allocated $1.8 million from Public Safety Canada (PSC) through the Building Safer Communities (BSC) Fund to develop and implement a strategic plan to address gun and gang violence and promote youth resiliency. Council endorsed the Nanaimo Youth Resilience Strategy on May 1, 2023.

The Strategy outlines six focus areas to prevent youth from engaging in gun and gang violence. The six focus areas include:

  • Safe Youth Gathering Spaces – safe, free youth gathering spaces within existing facilities.
  • Youth Outreach – to expand youth outreach to provide basic needs.
  • Connecting Youth to Land and Water through Snawaylth (Teachings) – connections to land and water to strengthen mental, emotional, spiritual, and cultural resilience.
  • Youth Mentoring – connect youth at risk with diverse role models and significant, caring adults.
  • Enhancing Existing Programs – improve existing programs by adding new components that fill gaps and build protective factors.
  • Media & Communications – develop key messaging to highlight successful youth programs and to address discrimination and stigma against youth.


In July the City launched the Nanaimo Youth Resilience Grant application process, including a website, press release, email update to stakeholders, and an information session. 23 applications were received and scored based on five criteria. The top-scoring applications addressed the six focus areas and included opportunities for partnerships and coordination of activities.

The recipients of the Building Safer Communities funding are:

  • Big Brother Big Sisters - Mindful Mentoring: Nurturing Resilience in Youth
    • A multifaceted program integrating yoga, mindfulness meditation, and cognitive therapeutic techniques.
  • BGC Central Vancouver Island – Nanaimo South Youth Hub
    • Drop-in youth spaces at Fifth Street and Nanaimo Aquatic Centre providing registration-based options, navigating services, case management, and activities for the most vulnerable youth.
  • Central Vancouver Island Multicultural Society – Connections
    • Interactive workshops empowering youth to build a sense of belonging and create positive networks and coping strategies.
  • City of Nanaimo – Parks, Recreation & Culture Youth Initiatives
    • City staff support a drop-in space with enhanced opportunities for recreational programs targeted to youth at risk.
  • Nanaimo Food Share – Food for Youth
    • Providing food security, cooking, and growing educational opportunities in safe youth gathering spaces.
  • Nanaimo Hornets Rugby Club – RugbyWorks
    • Incorporating mentorship and positive socialization activities by providing a visible presence in neighbourhoods, leveraging social media, and volunteerism.
  • School District 68 – Uy’ Sqwalawun (Good Heart & Mind)
    • Drop-in youth spaces at Woodlands Secondary, Pleasant Valley Elementary, and Georgia Avenue Community School with opportunities to connect with local Indigenous teachings, art, recreation, music, and caring adult mentors.
  • Snuneymuxw First Nation – Youth Resiliency & Snawaylth
    • drop-in space at Snuneymuxw Gym with socio-emotional learning opportunities, life skills, and traditional teachings.


The funds will be distributed starting October 1st, 2023.

A Steering Committee composed of multi-sector representation guides and supports the implementation of the Nanaimo Youth Resilience Strategy.  The Steering Committee meets monthly. 

    For more information, please contact:

    Media Links:

    News Release: City invites groups to apply for funds to prevent youth gun and gang violence

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