A fresh space for youth rehabilitation

By Gordon Lambie
A fresh space for youth rehabilitation
Joscelyn Lefebvre, Head of rehabilitation services for the Arc-en-ciel and Rivage units, Audrey Bergeron, project leader for the renovations, and Kim Houle, coordinator of Housing and rehabilitation with the youth centre administration. (Photo : Gordon Lambie)

A complete overhaul of the Marion Pavillon at the Val-du-Lac youth rehabilitation centre in Sherbrooke is now complete, in time for the space to welcome children again as of Wednesday. Built in the 1970s and used to house the centre’s six to 12 year olds, the building has been in a process of almost complete reinvention since mid-May.
“Val-du-Lac is a rehabilitation centre for youths who are struggling to fit in,” said Kim Houle, Coordinator of Housing and Rehabilitation with the youth centre administration, specifying that the majority of the young people under the centre’s care are there under the province’s youth protection laws. “These are often youths who have experienced multiple traumas in their childhood; either moving from family to family or traumas like neglect, physical, or sexual abuse.”
The campus as a whole, located in a pastoral setting near eastern shore of Lake Magog, features pavilions housing different age groups. Although the space includes a secure unit for youths who have committed offenses, Houle said that the aim is for the centre to be a transitional space that can help young people in crisis situations to work through challenges like attachment difficulties, aggressive behaviors and post-traumatic stress disorder to be able to reintegrate into regular life.
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