The teenage phase and young adult phase of someone’s life are very important life stages. With these come different pressures, challenges and expectations, compounded by physical, psychological changes that happen to someone from the inside.
Below are some resources that can help navigate the struggles that come with gradually transitioning into adulthood, since riding through the changes can help lead to a productive, fulfilling life from adulthood and beyond.
Resources for Mental Health for Youth
1. Starfish Family Resources: Family separation and divorce, death in the family, and any other major life changes can cause distress to youth as they adjust to their new circumstances. Starfish Family Resources assists children, teens and families with moving forward through major life transitions, by supporting appropriate programs and acting as a hub for related resources. Their website is http://www.starfishfamilyresources.org/ and their phone number is 780-448-1180.
2. Kids Help Phone Mental Health Crisis: Having someone to talk to in an anonymous and immediate manner can help a youth who is experiencing a moment of need, such as wanting to self-harm, if they are having suicidal thoughts, or feel isolated. The younger generation is more tech-savvy now, so a resource like Kids Help Phone can help by giving access to free, direct counseling. Their website is https://kidshelpphone.ca/ where the online chat can be accessed. They also have an app called “Always There”, and a text line that can be reached by texting CONNECT to 686868.
Resources for Teen Parents
1. Terra Centre for Teen Parents: Becoming a parent as a teen or young adult usually occurs unexpectedly, and it can be a difficult time for the new parents, the baby and other family members involved. Terra Centre provides support for teen moms and dads to help navigate the challenges of caring for anew baby such as meeting basic needs, employment, counseling, legal issues, and more. Their website is https://terracentre.ca/ and their phone number is 780-428-3772.
2. Alberta Health Services Health for Two: Health for Two is a free program for women who need extra support to have a healthy pregnancy, which can be a challenge for teenagers or young adults due to unstable situations in their lives. Various things are provided,such as educational information to stay healthy, resources including milk coupons, prenatal vitamins, and bus tickets for medical appointments, and referrals to appropriate programs. You can find the information online at https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/ then searching “Health for Two”.
Resources for Sexuality and Reproductive Health
1. Alberta Health Services Birth Control Centre: This program offers confidential services to teenage girls and women experiencing barriers to accessing birth control or other sexual health related services. Counselling, information and referrals as needed on contraception, unplanned pregnancies, pregnancy options, and safe sex practices are available. Located downtown at 10030 107 Street, their phone number is 780-735-0010, and you can find the information online at https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/and then by choosing ‘reproductive health’ as a category.
2. Teaching Sexual Health: Trusted adults in the life of the young person, such as parents, guardians and mentors, play a huge role in discussing important topics. Sexual health is one of them, though it’s understandable that many people find it awkward. This online resource can provide age-appropriate guidelines on sharing information about these topics such as relationship building, sexual and intimacy decisions, and puberty and pregnancy. The website is https://teachingsexualhealth.ca
3. Pride Centre of Edmonton: This agency provides support to the LGBT+ community in Edmonton, and they provide events, workshops and support that puts the perspective of the LGBT+ individuals in mind on various topics such as relationships, reproductive health and testing, and many more. Their website is pridecentreofedmonton.ca and their phone number is (780) 488-3234. They are located at 10618 105 Avenue.
While this is no way an exhaustive list, the goal is to encourage seeking information and assistance for any type of challenge, no matter how big or small, whether common or uncommon. For any readers who are not directly served by the area where the outlined organizations are listed, it is likely that equivalents are available by searching the topic and adding the name of your location.