OSNS Child and Youth Development Centre in Penticton thrilled by $20K donation towards autism programming

Bright future with autism

The OSNS Child and Youth Development Centre in the South Okanagan-Similkameen is thrilled to have received a $20,000 donation from the Telus Friendly Future Foundation.

OSNS' Link to Success Program, designed to build on the centre’s work to date with youth who have autism and other social communication challenges, will be the beneficiary.

“OSNS feels so fortunate for the opportunity to collaborate with Telus to support youth with emotional and social communication needs," said Heather Miller, executive director of the OSNS Child and Youth Development Centre, in a press release.

"Link@OSNS and Link to Success will support the building of relationships, being inclusive of all, and developing employment opportunities for youth. We all need to feel and be connected in a safe way."

Youth with autism and other social communication struggles currently access Link@OSNS, a program that teaches interaction skills needed to succeed in peer groups and in employment settings.

Link to Success is described by OSNS as "an innovative extension of this program that has two steps – motivating more at-risk youth to gain the social skills they need to be successfully employed through [the program], and providing an education series for employers on best practices for having individuals with autism in their workplaces."

“We’ve heard from our charity partners about the challenges young people with autism experience," said Shanan Spencer-Brown, executive director of the Telus Friendly Future Foundation.

“We are honoured to be able to support the OSNS Child and Youth Development Centre with a donation of $20,000 from the Telus Interior and Northern BC Community Board. We are so appreciative of the work OSNS is doing in their community, supporting an increase in participation [in their programming] and educating employers so they can have better practices when having young people with autism in their workplaces.”

OSNS has been helping children with developmental challenges in the community through their team of treatment specialists and support staff since 1978.

In the last year OSNS delivered over 100,000 hours of program services, thanks to the support of community-minded services clubs, businesses and individuals.

For more information, visit www.osns.org.

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