Youth in East Vancouver face complex challenges. A high number of youth are vulnerable to gang recruitment, child prostitution, exploitation, homelessness as well as other street-culture risks—and that number is growing.

2018 BC Child Poverty Report Card

Our team in East Vancouver has created three distinct programs to address these issues.

Street Life provides a safe space of belonging for marginalized young people. Many are street-entrenched (homeless, gang-affiliated, drug-trafficking, etc.) or street-involved (participating in high-risk, street-level activities, but not fully consumed by the community). We offer relationships, referrals, and resources to vulnerable young people, ages twelve to twenty-five. Street Life provides Vancouver with the only mobile youth drop-in centre in the city; a renovated thirty-eight-foot RV which enables us to meet youth both literally and figuratively where they are at. The Street Life RV is currently operating two evenings per week in two different locations in East Vancouver.

Street Life Staff:

Leia Newland        Amanda Ratzlaff

Creative Life is a community arts initiative that engages youth ages fifteen to twenty-five who face the challenges of homelessness, poverty and addiction. In Creative Life we celebrate the creativity and resourcefulness of youth living on the margins.

Through engagement in the arts, we provide opportunities in a safe space for creative discovery, expression, and community involvement while enabling youth to find belonging and discover their capacity, identity and purpose.

We see each youth as having a unique perspective and a unique way to impact the world around them. We believe in the power of storytelling and transformation that creative collaboration can initiate.


  • Open Studio – a space for creative discovery and expression
  • Instructional workshops – for skill development in various art disciplines, facilitated by community artists.
  • Youth lead projects – cultivate leadership, community involvement, social change and the development of soft skills.

Creative Life Staff:

Charlotte Browning        Lyndsay Kinghorn          Darby Arens

Mountain Life creates opportunities for youth ages twelve to twenty-five to experience mountain adventures. Getting outside and being surrounded by trees and mountains is something that can bring a sense of peace, perspective and clarity which is easily lost in city life.

Our team of volunteers and staff are stoked to share their love of the outdoor playground that lies just outside the city. We embark on activities such as hiking, mountain biking, snowshoeing, skiing and snowboarding.

The Mountain Life team fulfills Youth Unlimited’s purpose statement by seeking to make connections and create partnerships with agencies and individuals who share a love of the outdoors – and introduce that love to young people who struggle to navigate life in the massive labyrinth called city life.

Mountain Life Staff:

Graham Goertzen

Upcoming Events:

  • Night Sessions (SKI/SNOWBOARD) at Mount Seymour:  Cost $15 per session. Dates: Jan 10, 17, 24 // Feb 14, 21, 28 //Mar 6, 13, 27 // Apr 3, 10
  • California Spring Breakaway 2020: March 14-23, 2020 Cost $705 CAD – valid passport mandatory

For more info about these events, email Graham Goertzen.

“We seek to build genuine relationships and meaningful and connections with the young people that we meet. We don’t do this alone. By partnering with local churches, schools, and community agencies, we provide youth with developmental opportunities for their whole person – mental, physical, social, emotional, and spiritual.”

Cecil Rast
East Vancouver Area Director