Youth Without Shelter

Youth Without Shelter (YWS) is the singular emergency residence and referral agency in Etobicoke (west end Toronto) dedicated to providing shelter and support programs for homeless and at-risk youth ages 16 to 24. Since opening in 1986 YWS has helped more than 15,000 homeless youth from across the Greater Toronto Area to build their confidence and to find long-term stable housing and jobs. Today YWS is not only able to offer a safe, warm bed for youth but have evolved to offer a full circle of empowering programs to over 1,000 homeless youth each year; 33 bed Emergency Residential Program; Step to Success Life Skills program; Housing and After-care Program; Employment Program; Educational Outreach Program; and a long-term transitional 20 bed Stay in School Residence.

Recruiting for: There a number of ways volunteers can support the shelter. These include both onsite and offsite options. This may take place in the form of organizing fundraisers, donation drives and participating in the shelter's fundraising events such as Tokens 4 Change. Onsite options include donating and serving a meal at the shelter or potentially becoming a tutor for our youth residents. Please note that for onsite options, we ask volunteers to be minimum age of 25 years old.

Skills: Our shelter welcomes volunteers to become engaged through sharing their experiences and skills to help support the work that we do. There are no specific requirements for skill sets; however depending on the opportunity, it would be beneficial to have relevant experience. For example, if you some level of experience cooking, you might be interested in donating a meal or if you have a specific area of study/experience teaching, you might be interested in the option of becoming a tutor. Aside from the age restriction for onsite options (25+ years), everyone is welcome to inquire about specific programs and projects.

Programs: Students with a background/study/experience teaching subjects such as (Math, Science, English, Writing, Languages) could potentially share their knowledge working with our youth. Otherwise, students from all backgrounds are welcome

Where positions are posted:

Application method: Students may reach out to YWS Engagement Specialist to inquire about volunteering through the shelter:

How to prepare: Students may prepare in advance by reviewing the project and different role descriptions on the website ( prior to coming to the event. They can meet and follow up with the shelter representative if they have any specific questions.