Forty teams, 200 participants, raised a record $60,957 at this year’s Coldest Night of the Year walk for Youth Haven.

“Imagine in a time when we are in the midst of a pandemic that so many individuals and organizations chose to be the difference in the lives of our young people,” said Lucy Gowers, Youth Haven executive director. “It is a testament to the generosity of the communities in which Youth Haven is located.”

Funds from the walk will be used to provide programming and services to youths experiencing homelessness or who are at risk of becoming homeless.

This year’s walk was self-organized. In other words, participants mapped out their 2 to 5 km safe route and could gather with their COVID-safe bubble, or walk on their own. People were able to donate or organize a walk through the end of February, though the official walk date was technically on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021.

Youth Haven operates a shelter and a transitional home in Barrie, and provides outreach services in Barrie, Orillia, Midland, southern Georgian Bay, Innisfil, Bradford and the Alliston-area.

One in three people using shelter services in Simcoe County is youth. In 2020, Youth Haven provided assistance to over 400 young people.

Thank you to everyone who chose to be #bethedifference in the lives of our youth.

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