The City of Brantford was designated a “Youth Friendly Community” at the 2017 Parks and Recreation Ontario annual conference in Huntsville. Brantford joins 45 other communities from across Ontario to receive this designation, which recognizes communities that invest in youth and their future. These communities represent more than 42% of Ontario’s population, so Ontario is well on its way to becoming a Youth Friendly Province!
Play Works, the Ontario Partnership for Active and Engaged Youth, works to acknowledge the great work that some communities are doing in ensuring their youth (ages 13-19) have continuous access to a diversity of ‘play’ (play being anything a young person does in his/her free time, which could include: sport, recreation, drama, dance, music, the arts, volunteerism, leadership development, service leadership and/or civic engagement.)
The Play Works Youth Friendly Community Recognition Program awards communities in Ontario that are meeting the needs of adolescent youth based on the following criteria:
- Youth have options for play
- Youth are formally connected community-wide
- Youth can easily find information about play activities in the community
- The community recognizes and celebrates youth
- The community formally commits funding for youth play
- The community supports positive youth development
- Youth feel valued by their community
- Schools and school boards support the Youth Friendly approach
- Play is accessible to youth
- Play is socially inclusive
Communities that meet a minimum of 7 of the 10 criteria mentioned above will be recognized as Youth Friendly. The designation recognizes a series of initiatives the City has undertaken to meet the needs of youth in our community including the “W-Lounge” and “The Eagles Nest” dedicated youth spaces launched at Woodman Community Centre, Doug Snooks Eagle Place Community Centre and TB Costain/SC Johnson Community Centre, as well as the “Crew Card” youth membership program, that provides access to free and discounted programming at Woodman Park and Branlyn Community Centres. The “W-Lounge” is located at Woodman Park Community Centre and gives youth access to smart boards, iPads, Xbox One and fun games such as pool, ping-pong, and more. The lounge is a fun, safe environment to get caught up on homework, bring a friend to hang out or meet a new friend.
Youth Recreation Memberships are only $5/year and members will also receive special discounted rates on select programs and trips, access to lounges, drop-ins, and more. Drop-in programs are included with membership and programming begins September 11, 2017. “Specialty Drop-ins” includes craft nights, book club, art club, and dodgeball, while “Sport Drop-ins” range from open gym to basketball and other pick-up sports. “Social Drop-ins” at the WLounge and “Skateboard Drop-ins” at the Indoor Sk8Park are also very popular.
In addition to drop-ins, there is an extensive list of youth specialty programs available for those who want a more consistent schedule. Programs include: Cook Up a Storm (Ages 11-15), Baking Basics (Ages 11-15), Hip Hop with TEMPO, What’s Your Sport?, Youth Paint Nights (Ages 11-17), Red Cross Babysitter Training (Ages 11-15), Infusion Youth Day Trips (Ages 11-17), and more.
For more information about community facilities and programming, please click here to link to the City of Brantford website
For more information about youth programming, please click here to open the Fall 2017 Leisure Activities Guide
Please scroll to view page 19 of the guide
For more information about recreation programs offered at the Woodman Park Community Centre, please click here to view a quick YouTube video
For more information or to speak directly to a staff member, please call 519-752-0890 ext. 5579