Table of Contents
(Use the dot navigation aid to the right to go to each section or click on the section title below)
Message to Supporters
Despite a very challenging year, NYSA was able to effectively provide services and support to the youth of the mid-Island region. In spite operating with reduced numbers in our training programs, we were able to maintain our fiscal health due to an emphasis on decreased spending as well as assistance from pandemic-focused support provided by government. In spite of the challenges the past year brought, we were able to maintain full employment for all staff throughout the year.
NYSA employees deserve kudos for adapting to the changed environment in 2020-2021. They embraced social distancing and mask wearing while taking turns ensuring NYSA premises were cleaned and disinfected regularly. We are thankful for the youth residing in our housing centre, who paid attention to the restrictions and helped us get through the challenges of COVID largely unscathed. Thank you everyone!
Financially, NYSA showed a positive improvement over fiscal-2020. This was the result of pandemic-related funding as well as staff paying close attention to decreased operating revenues and adjusting costs accordingly. As we enter a new year, we are aware that fiscal challenges will again be the order of the day. Lower support from government as the pandemic abates and higher costs of goods and services will again put pressure on our operation’s finances.
To respond to the changed environment, NYSA’s Board of Directors has been focused on improving the organization’s governance, revisiting the strategic plan and developing new options to improve support for Vancouver Island’s youth population. Over the coming year, our operation will continue to adjust to the new reality facing us as we move forward. The Board is planning an in-depth review of the Strategic Plan in light of the changed circumstances brought about by the pandemic.
NYSA has developed several working partnerships over the past couple of years that are worthy of mention. We are grateful to our partners for helping us serve youth that were not part of the “traditional” NYSA audience. We would like to thank Snuneymuxw First Nation, Petroglyph Development Corporation, Central Vancouver Island Multicultural Society, and Indigenous Sport, Physical Activity and Recreation Council. We look forward to continuing our work with you.
We would like to thank our supporters, both individuals and groups, for their assistance with funding and resources over the past challenging year. We hope you will continue to be supportive of the organization as we strive to create new futures for many of the young people in our community. A special thanks is extended to the Rotary Club of Nanaimo which provided much needed funding to help us move to laptop computers for all staff. These were especially useful in providing work-from-home options and allowing our staff to work from wherever they happen to connect with youth in our region.
In conclusion, we are excited by new opportunities that are developing in our changed world. NYSA will have several new ideas to share with you over the next year and we look forward to hearing from you – tell us your reaction to the 2021 version of NYSA as it unfolds.
A Year With COVID
COVID-19 did not have a significant impact on the organization with the exception that training numbers were down noticeably and cleaning and disinfecting protocols were the order of the day. Going forward, we expect training numbers to return to historic levels.
Within the workplace, very few employees worked from home even though it was offered as an alternative to those who were unsure of entering the office. While NYSA never closed its doors, we did change how we worked. Doors were locked to the public and all interactions were by appointment or virtual meetings.
We were fortunate to receive support from the Rotary Club of Nanaimo which allowed us to purchase laptop computers for all staff. This gave us the tools to conduct remote meetings and interviews as well as to be able to work from anywhere.
Going forward, we believe that cleanliness and workplace sanitation will continue to play a significant role in our operation. Especially in our housing centre, the new expectation is that buildings will not harbour communicable disease of any type, at any time. This will mean more attention to cleaning, maintaining air-handling equipment and having disinfectant available in common areas at all times.
Management has determined that there is no material uncertainty that casts doubt on NYSA’s ability to continue as a going concern. We expect that COVID-19 might have some lasting impact, though not significant. For example, while some peoples’ priorities may have changed somewhat, a focus on working in a job that brings more than a paycheque may have a positive effect on our training courses.
In housing, there may be increased costs for maintenance (more cleaning and upgrades), as well as increased costs to do renovations, repairs and new construction. Housing industry reports indicate that material costs will decline somewhat from current levels but will not return to the prices we saw prior to the pandemic.
NYSA, through several operational changes is poised to do well in the coming years. The addition of laptop computers for everyone coupled with a move to Microsoft 365 has increased our flexibility, improved our computer network, allowed staff to work wherever they are, and cut our information technology costs significantly. As well, we moved to an online telephone system as our old one was becoming less reliable – it’s equipment is pretty much obsolete. Again, once the bugs are out of the new system, staff will be able to answer their phone whether they are in the office or in some other city.
NYSA was pushed to change our way of doing business by the pandemic. Looking back over the past year and a half, it appears to be a change for the better. We’re looking forward to applying our new skills, methods and tools to improve our services for mid-Island youth for many years to come.
If I were to say BladeRunners changed my life, it would be an understatement. Before, I was lost and I felt like I didn’t have a home, I didn’t feel safe or felt like I belonged anywhere really. Although throughout my time in this program that all changed and on my first day it was like walking into a room full of people who I feel like I’ve known for my entire life, it felt like the family I had always dreamed of, I finally felt safe and free from my toxic household. Since feeling safe and free for the first time in my life I have finally learned that it’s okay to have feelings and it’s alright to talk to people about it, now I know what’s best for me. I have developed a support system for the first time in my life. Now I am 17 years old and applying for youth housing, getting a job, making friends that will last forever as well as learning how to deal with normal human emotions, all while having so much fun and making endless memories that will surely last a lifetime.
Being in this program has taught me many beneficial things such as getting my first aid level-one ticket which was one of many struggles in 2019. BladeRunners isn’t just about construction, it’s about learning how to cope with stressful situations you might deal with in the workplace or in your personal life as well as many other life skills. BladeRunners helped me give me a voice and stand up for myself and move forward. I wish I could stay at BladeRunners forever, but all good things must come to an end unfortunately. You all have taught me something during my time here, now it’s time for me to use those skills in my everyday life in the big wide world. BladeRunners saved my life and helped me realize I was worth more than I thought, I thought I was stupid and dumb and wasn’t going to go anywhere in life, but it just took one day for me to realize that I just need a helping hand to reach my full potential.
|Total Net Assets||$1,008, 674|
Thank You to Our Supporters
Church Pickard staff
Coast Capital Savings
Coast Distributors (Nanaimo) Ltd.
Felice Cavalotti Lodge
First West Credit Union
Government of British Columbia
Government of Canada
Loaves and Fishes
Ministry of Children and Family Development (CYSN Team)
Provincial Employees Community Services Fund
Rotary Club of Nanaimo
Schmunk Gatt Smith & Associates
United Way Central and Northern Vancouver Island
Western Financial Group
Young Professionals of Nanaimo Association
Youth and Philanthropy Initiative Canada
NYSA Board and Staff
Board of Directors
Allan Beaudry, President
Don Stedeford, Secretary
Kali Friday, Treasurer
Leana Pellegrin, Director
Sheila White, Director
Keith Wilson, Chief Administrative Officer
Chris Lakusta, Director, Housing & Supportive Living
Amanda Pitts, Outreach Worker
Michelle Ripka, Outreach Worker
Samantha Mason, Outreach Worker
Berani Fielding, Director, DiverseFutures
Emily Boond, Trainer and Administrative Coordinator
Emma Bruschetta, Director, BladeRunners
Amy Worth, Director, Fund Development & Communications
Allison Evans, Acting Controller
Pom Lemire, Bookkeeper
Kevin Delaney, Facilities Coordinator
Hannah Dawson, Housing Coordinator
Brianna Purdy, Housing Assistant
Kourtni Dzugan, Housing Support Worker
Jeremy Stoecklin, Housing Support Worker
Anthony Maki, Job Coach & L2N Coordinator
Les Pangborne-LaHue, L2N Co-Pilot
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NYSA acknowledges our work takes place on Coast Salish territories and primarily the lands of the Snuneymuxw and K’òmoks peoples.