The Service Seeking Profiles of Youth Accessing a Youth Wellness Hubs Ontario Site

Youth Wellness Hubs Ontario

Youth Wellness Hubs Ontario (YWHO) is a network of 14, one-stop hubs where young people ages 12 to 25 years have walk-in access to youth-centered, community-based mental health and wellness services informed by youth, family members and service providers. The hubs are provincially-consistent in core features and locally led and adapted to offer and connect to a range of evidence-based services – mental health care, substance use, primary care, education, employment, housing, peer support, family support and care navigation – in youth-friendly spaces. This presentation will share findings to better understand the demographic characteristics of YWHO youth, services accessed, service goals, interventions received, and youth mental health and substance use profiles.


Nirupa Varatharasan
Nirupa Varatharasan provides evaluation support for the Youth Wellness Hubs Ontario initiative in the Provincial System Support Program at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH).

Key takeaways

  • What is YWHO: a service platforms for improving youth service experiences and outcomes through access, measurement, and tailored, integrated high quality services
    • Youth co-created
    • Provides mental health and substance use services, primary healthcare, and education, employment, community and recreational services
    • 6 core components (building blocks)
      • 1. Youth engagement
      • 2. Integrated governance
      • 3. Accessible location
      • 4. Culturally diverse
      • 5. Integrated service delivery
      • 6. Measurement-based care
  • 14 sites across Ontario in high youth traffic environments, with funding for 6 more sites available
  • Demographic characteristics and service data was collected from april 1st 2020 to september 30th 2021 to inform equitable and effective health services and diversity of staff
    • Important to understand which populations are accessing the hubs and which populations aren’t and why
    • Demographic data elements: pronouns, language of services, whether the youth was born in canada, ethnicity, gender identity, employment status, etc. (self reported data)
    • The largest age demographic (38%) accessing services were between 18-21 years old (transitional age youth)
      56% of services were mental health related, 26% was navigation, and 5% was physical health
    • Wants to take a health equity perspective to understand the services accessed by population who seek these services

Key Learning Objectives (defined by presenters)

  1. Enhance participant knowledge of the multiple intersecting needs of youth presenting to an integrated youth service
  2. Enhance participant knowledge of the services and interventions utilized by youth presenting to an integrated youth service
  3. Enhance participant knowledge of the mental health and substance use profiles of youth presenting to an integrated youth service

Key Themes

  1. Equitable access to care among diverse populations
  2. Youth demographics accessing care

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