Building Safer Communities Fund Program

The City of New West has launched innovative programs for young people through the Building Safer Communities Fund (BSCF) Program.

Thanks to funding from Public Safety Canada, the City received $1.7 million over four years to deliver new programming and resources until March 31, 2026.

The main mission is to support amazing youth aged 12-25 and provide basic needs, and alternatives to divert them away from any gang involvement by educating, building resilience, and creating safe spaces of belonging in the community.

The City of New West is working with non-profit organizations, youth, and other key partners to identify ways to stop and prevent youth violence.

Contact

For more information about the Building Safer Communities Program and project initiatives, including the New Westminster Situation Table, please contact: 

Lauren Mathias, Program Manager
lmathias@newwestcity.ca
778.222.3716

BSCF Initiatives

Our initiatives are focused on community collaboration, community safety, and launching prevention strategies to address increased gang and gun violence. Partnerships and networks are essential to help youth thrive.

The following programs and initiatives form the base of work:

  • Get ready for a game-changer! Thanks to funding from Public Safety Canada and additional funding from the Province of British Columbia, we’ve set up the New Westminster Situation Table. This table brings together multiple agencies like the New Westminster School District, the New Westminster Police Department and the Ministry of Child and Family Development to help vulnerable young people get the support they need using a risk-based, collaborative, rapid triage model.

    The Situation Table:

    • Improves communication and coordination of community resources working to serve at-risk youth
    • Supports young people from becoming involved in gang-associated behaviours by providing wrap around supports and positive alternatives to gang life
    • Offers intervention support tailored to meet individual and unique needs, grounded in culturally relevant and trauma informed services in an expedited way

    The Situation Table meets weekly at New Westminster City Hall. The list of community partners, as well as active table participants includes:

    • Aunt Leah’s Place
    • BC Housing
    • Boys and Girls Club - Odyssey I Program
    • Canadian Mental Health Association
    • Cameray Child and Family Services
    • City of New Westminster
    • Dan’s Legacy
    • Federation of BC Youth in Care Networks
    • Fraser Heath
    • Fraserside Community Resources
    • Last Door Recovery Society
    • Massey Theatre Society
    • Ministry of Children and Family Development
    • Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General
    • Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction
    • MOSAIC - SWIS Program
    • New Westminster Police Department
    • New Westminster School District
    • OCABC – CFSEU End Gang Life
    • Pacific Community Resources Society – IRAYL Program
    • Red Fox Healthy Living Society
    • Spirit of the Children Society
    • The Lower Mainland Purpose Society
    • Transit Police
    • Washington Kids Foundation
  • The City is developing a City-wide plan rooted in building youth resiliency and empowerment. We’re focused on hearing what young people need to keep them safe and away from gangs and gun violence. Key outcomes are ensuring youth voices are amplified, that services provided are relevant, culturally appropriate, trauma informed, and most importantly, meets youth where they are at and tailored to their individual needs.

  • The Hub is operated by the Lower Mainland Purpose Society and is located at a prime spot in the downtown core where youth can hangout, connect with their peers, and get the support they need. From wraparound services to skill-building programs, they’ve got youth covered. The Hub is a safe and welcoming space and is focused on offering positive and healthy pathways for all youth.

    Check out their website and Instagram for the latest monthly calendars and special events.

    Website: purposesociety.org

    Instagram account: @newwestyouthhub

  • Say hello to “Dan’s Diner” - it’s not just any café, but a storefront diner run by youth for youth!  Operated by Dan’s Legacy, it’s all about serving up tasty, delicious meals at prices that won’t break the bank. “Dan’s Diner” offers vulnerable young people a unique opportunity to acquire marketable job skills in the food service industry, while receiving essential clinical support from the Dan’s Legacy’s team of therapists, social workers and outreach workers. Building self-esteem, being able to obtain meaningful employment, and imagining a healthy and productive future are only some of the ways the Dan’s Diner project is helping to build resilience among youth.

    Check out their website and Instagram to learn more:

    Dan’s Diner: danslegacy.com/dans-diner

    Program Website: danslegacy.com

    Instagram account: @danslegacybc


  • The BSCF Program also focuses on raising awareness in the community and ensuring there are increased gang and gun violence preventative programs where needed. This includes:

    Middle School Prevention:

    In collaboration with School District 40, the City is hosting educational workshops on gun and gang violence for students and parents. Ensuring youth have this information in the younger years helps them to make positive choices and gives parents tangible tools to identify high-risk behaviours.

    Her Time Program:

    The Her Time girls program takes a strengths-based approach to empower young females to stay safe and healthy while achieving remarkable things in their lives. The foundational pillars of the Her Time program focuses on positive relationships, healthy living, financial independence, goal setting and personal safety. Her Time programming to be offered in collaboration with the Washington Kids Foundation and School District 40.