Mission Vision Values
These statements are a description of the strategic philosophy of the organization.
Striving toward inclusion, tolerance and empowerment
Erin Mills Youth Centre will provide a community-based centre where youth are engaged in activities that lead to their physical, emotional, social and intellectual development, as individuals and members of the community.
EMYC will achieve its goal by remaining consistent to the following principles:
We are committed to planning, partnering and seeking input in service delivery with all of our stakeholders.
We are committed to ensuring that our focus is representative of the diverse community we serve.
We are committed to embracing and celebrating our differences by treating everyone with respect and honour.
We are committed to having an ethically based organizational culture acting with honesty in everything we do.
We are committed to offering leadership opportunities, which empower youth and their families to overcome obstacles and to enhance the quality of their lives.
We are committed to providing places where program participants feel physically and emotionally safe.
Erin Mills Youth Centre is located within the Erin Mills United church and provides services and programs to the children and youth within the West Mississauga area. Erin Mills Youth Centre began its journey as a service organization in 1996 under the leadership of Reverend Harry Oussoren Minister of Erin Mills United Church, which is located at Winston Churchill Blvd. and The Collegeway.
At that time, Rev. Oussoren noticed that the youth in the community were “hanging out” in the church parking lot after school, on the weekends, and during school holidays. Recognizing the need to provide a safe place for the youth in the neighbourhood, Rev. Oussoren organized and facilitated the opening of a summer drop-in program at the Erin Mills United Church. This outreach program was serviced by volunteers and became the Erin Mills Youth Outreach Program (EMYOP). A Breakfast program was soon added to give the children a healthy start to their day. Next came a weekly Homework Help program after school. Erin Mills United Church members ran both programs.
In 2006, a group of church members, led by Al Seymour, applied for and received a four-year grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation. This grant was paramount in increasing the capacity of the organization from being a part-time occasional program to employing three full-time and one part-time staff. Similarly, the number of programs offered also increased (e.g. Girls Club, Boys Club, Basketball, Karate, Leadership Training, Youth Council, Friday Night Dinner Date, March Break Camp, and Oasis Summer Day Camp). Funding for the programs comes from grants received from organizations such as the United Way, Ontario Trillium Foundation, Peel Region, The Ministry of Health Promotion, Service Canada, the Ministry of Children’s Services and the Heart Health Foundation. From time to time, donations are received from private sector corporations and private individuals.
By 2008, the EMYOP program had grown to such an extent that it was beyond the capacity of the Erin Mills United Church (EMUC) Leadership Circle to manage. It was considered that the governance and administrative needs of the community youth program would best be served by EMYOP incorporating as a stand-alone non-profit organization with charitable status. The EMUC Leadership Circle was consulted in this regard and has been fully supportive of the move to have EMYOP incorporate independently of Erin Mills United Church, but still remain under the umbrella of the United Church of Canada. Hence the birth of our new name, in 2010, Erin Mills Youth Centre.