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Ask Away: at the Uxbridge Youth Centre


COURTNEY McCLURE The Standard

UXBRIDGE: The Uxbridge Youth Centre (UYC) will be hosting an online question and answer session with registered Psychologist, Helen Daymond. Kids and teens living in Uxbridge are invited to ask questions and send them to Helen via the Uxbridge Youth Centre’s website. According to the program facilitator at the UYC, Dale McKnight, the UYC has a drop-in centre, providing free daily programs and workshops for kids and teens. Mr. McKnight said it was unfortunate the UYC had to temporarily close their drop-in centre because of the restrictions set due to the pandemic. “We still want to support our youth in any way we can,” said Mr. McKnight. Ask Away was developed to help kids and teens stay at home and learn different strategies for dealing with social distancing, which is a new experience for them. According to Mr. McKnight, the goal of Ask Away is to connect kids and teens with the information they are looking for during the pandemic. Kids can access the Ask Away program through the Uxbridge Youth Centre’s website. The Psychologist answering these questions, Ms. Helen Daymond, is from Port Perry and is also a member of the UYC’s board of directors. Ms. Daymond offered to participate in the program because she wanted to support the community in Uxbridge. Before the first episodes were uploaded, Ms. Daymond divided each of the pre-selected questions into a number of categories, she will be answering a different category during each episode. Since future episodes will also be separated into categories, the length will depend on how many questions each category has, Mr. McKnight explained. In terms of accessibility, the UYC wants to keep the videos on the shorter side so kids can find what they are looking for quickly. Mr. McKnight encourages kids and teens to watch future episodes of Ask Away as they are uploaded. “Each video will contain great professional advice,” he said, “regardless of whether or not it’s a topic that’s immediately relevant to you.” Since the program was started in light of the Covid-19 pandemic, the UYC has not decided on an end date for the program. However, Mr. McKnight would like the program to continue running when the pandemic has past, as long as it is beneficial to the community. The first video for Ask Away has been posted on the Uxbridge Youth Centre’s website and is available for kids and teens to watch at any time. Ms. Daymond is already working on future videos.

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