LETTER: Langley must be the village that helps teens in crisis

Editor: I am a student from Walnut Grove Secondary School who has just finished Grade 10.

As part of my July writing program focused on the issue of homeless teens, I have come to realize that this issue in Langley should gain more awareness.

I began my research by reading a federal policy brief, City council minutes, and local newspaper articles. One article from the Langley Times published on April 20, 2016, by Monique Tamminga reported that, “There were up to 200 teens in Langley who didn’t have a home to go to at various times in their lives last year.”

In addition, I interviewed Mr. Loren Roberts who is the Operations Manager of Encompass Support Services Society (ESSS), and works with community partners to raise awareness of the need for a teen homeless shelter specifically for Langley.

Also, ESSS allocated, through a community grant of $50,000 over a four year period, to support the operation of the youth Hub in Langley. The Hub, which is open on Tuesday and Thursday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. provides meals, programs and health services for all teens.

However, there is still a need for municipal, provincial and federal partnerships to provide  planning and funding  before a youth shelter for Langley can become a reality.

Even though I have never been homeless, I know how important it is for families to support each other.

For example, when my family and I were living in Hong Kong, we had to live in a cramped apartment because rental costs were expensive. But my mother would always tell me, “It doesn’t matter if the apartment we live in is compact, as long as we are all together, it’s all that matters.”

I have realized that many teens in Langley who are facing homelessness, need the same reassurance and support that my mother gave to our family.

For these teens, the communities of Langley are their surrogate parents and need to provide an emergency shelter during their time of crisis.

There are youth shelters in both Surrey and Abbotsford. Isn’t it time that Langley does the same?

Sydney Fang,

Grade 10 student,

Walnut Grove Secondary School

Just Posted

VIDEO: Koch’s OT winner sends Giants to sixth straight victory

Three games, three cities, three victories for the Langley-based hockey G-Men.

VIDEO: New homes for old dogs

Langley event has high number of senior dogs up for adoption

Tardi earns first victory in quest for third national title

A Langley-based junior curling team is in Prince Albert, Sask. for the Canadian championships.

VIDEO: Giants wrap southern swing with 6-4 win in Spokane

The Langley-based hockey team defeated the Chiefs Friday night.

Charges upgraded against mother of murdered Langley girl

Kerryann Lewis now faces first- rather than second-degree murder in the death of Aaliyah Rosa.

VIDEO: Students in MAGA hats mock Native American at Indigenous Peoples March

Diocese in Kentucky says it is investigating the matter, caught on video by onlookers

Want to avoid the speculation tax on your vacant home? Rent it out, Horgan says

Premier John Horgan and Sheila Malcolmson say speculation and vacancy tax addresses homelessness

CONSUMER REPORT: What to buy each month in 2019 to save money

Resolve to buy all of the things you want and need, but pay less money for them

UPDATE: B.C. woman and boy, 6, found safe, RCMP confirm

Roseanne Supernault says both she and her six-year-old nephew are fine and she has contacted police

PHOTOS: Women’s Marches take to the streets across B.C. and beyond

Women and allies marched worldwide protesting violence against women, calling for equality

Anxiety in Alaska as endless aftershocks rattle residents

Seismologists expect the temblors to continue for months, although the frequency has lessened

Women’s March returns across the U.S. amid shutdown and controversy

The original march in 2017, the day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration, drew hundreds of thousands of people

Federal Liberals announce former B.C. MLA as new candidate in byelection

Richard Lee will face off against federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh

No winning ticket in $10 million Lotto Max jackpot

No win in Friday night’s draw means the next Lotto Max draw will be approximately $17 million

Most Read