Surrey Youth Alliance plays host to anywhere from 15-40 youth between the ages of 14 and 21 at our normal Wednesday drop-ins. These youth are as diverse as any high school in Canada, with different ages, genders, races, and religions meeting for a common reason: support for gay teens.
Surrey Youth Alliance started off as a Youth Quest group, with several members of the Out In Surrey Rainbow Cultural Society volunteering. Eventually, after Youth Quest closed down their Surrey group due to financial reasons, O.I.S.R.C.S. stepped in and decided to take the Youth Group on as a project. On January 1st, 2005, the group was re-named 'Surrey Youth Alliance', and sole sponsorship was taken on by OISRCS. They made a huge impact on the gay youth in the area, making sure that they continue to have a place to come and be safe, and they continue to support the youth group in every way. As of Jan 2008 SYA became it's own society. Operating costs of SYA are now the responsibility of SYA and its youth. We have different fundraisers throughout the year to raise money to keep our weekly drop-ins running, with food and the ability to take the youth on outings. Donations to the Society are always welcome and appreciated, and can be done by contacting us with the link at the bottom (email@example.com).
SYA is friendly to youth of all genders and sexual orientations. It's also a great place for questioning or unsure youth to come and ask questions. Snacks are supplied at every meeting, and a 30-minute group circle is usually held, discussing ideas for upcoming events, suggestions for drop-in activities, and a quick once-over of current events both in the community and in the world.
The youth can discuss their weeks, ask for advice or ideas for projects or obstacles, and occasionally a topic discussion will be put on the table, for all the youth to listen and participate in. We try and keep Alliance a positive and friendly place to be, and as a result, several rules are in place:
- Respect is given to every member and volunteer.
- Respect must be accorded to the space we meet in.
- No aggressive or inappropriate behavior.
- Drug/Alcohol-free zone. Anyone is found to be under the influence of a substance (alcohol, drugs, etc.) will be asked to leave immediately.