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My Experience as a Peer Youth Worker

Monday, October 28, 2019

The following guest post was written by Blaise Patterson, a student who worked as a Peer Youth Worker for Nexus Youth Services in 2018-19. For more information about student placements, volunteering and employment opportunities with Nexus, please visit our Careers page.

While completing my studies, I had many opportunities to learn and grow, and among those opportunities was a chance to work at Nexus Youth Services as a summer student, then a Peer Youth Worker (PYW) supporting young people between the ages of 14 – 24 at the Nexus Youth Centre.

From the very first day, I knew that the Nexus Youth Centre was a special place. Never before had I felt so welcome, so quickly, in a new workplace. Nexus is filled with passionate, knowledgeable staff who are committed to empowering youth; as well as a variety of youth who visit the centre, all of who I consider myself very fortunate to have met.

As a PYW, I learned and developed skills that will be useful to me throughout my life and career. For example, I learned how to work with diverse groups of youth and community partners and had lots of opportunities to practice leadership. In a little under a year, I improved my community outreach skills by facilitating special events like a skateboarding tournament, basketball tournament and a plethora of workshops. There was a lot to learn, but the Nexus staff team encouraged me to take on new challenges and supported me as I balanced work, school and daily life.

From new friends and professional contacts, to volunteer opportunities and the chance to make a positive impact for young people in Peel Region, the Nexus Youth Centre has something to offer everyone. Despite its small size, Nexus has a giant impact on the surrounding community, and I feel very fortunate to have worked there.
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Arbonne Charitable Foundation Helps Nexus Youth Build Self-Esteem

Monday, April 9, 2018

In February, Nexus welcomed staff from the Arbonne Charitable Foundation to a meeting of the Between Us Girls group at the Nexus Youth Centre. Fourteen excited and engaged...
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Katarina MacLeod of Rising Angels talks to Nexus youth about the harsh realities of human trafficking in Canada

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Trigger warning: The following blog post discusses topics that may be upsetting to some readers. If you would like to talk to someone, please call one of the Crisis...
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Sweet Treats, Jump Shots & the Impact of Nexus Youth Services

Friday, September 2, 2016

The following is a guest post by Danielle Gayton, who is an associate in RBC’s Career Launch program for new graduates. Danielle is currently on a 3-month placement with...
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PVP Raises $20,000 for Nexus & Youth Mental Health

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Now in its second year, the PosVibes Project (PVP) is an independent, non-profit, formal event that aims to proactively tackle the stigma surrounding mental health. As they...
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Fasting 5K Toronto Raises $12,000 for Nexus!

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Earlier this summer, Nexus Youth Services was delighted to be selected as the charity of choice by Fasting 5K's Toronto chapter. Fasting 5K is a US-based organization that...
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NexTalks 2016: Youth share stories of hope & resilience

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

On March 9th, approximately 40 Nexus youth, staff and supporters gathered at the Nexus Youth Centre for NexTalks, a youth speakers' forum aimed to end the stigma of mental...
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Fun, Floats, & Fundraising!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

The following is a guest post by Sam Tibshirani, who is an associate in RBC’s Career Launch program for new graduates. Sam is currently on a 3-month placement with Nexus’s...
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Courtside Reporting: On the Sidelines of the Nexus Youth Services 4th Annual Basketball Tournament

Monday, August 24, 2015

The following is a guest post by Sam Tibshirani, who is an associate in RBC’s Career Launch program for new graduates. Sam is currently on a 3-month placement with Nexus’s...
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Taking Action Against Bullying: Simrat's Story

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

The following is a guest post by youth kindness and anti-bullying advocate, Simrat Heer. Simrat recently completed grade 11 at Streetsville Secondary School in Mississauga....
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Nexus Youth In Living Colour

Monday, September 29, 2014

Had you visited the Nexus Youth Centre on any given Wednesday between January and June this year, you would have found a group of budding young artists, carefully...
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Measuring Success at Nexus Youth Services

Friday, September 12, 2014

Measuring the impact of our services is an important part of the work we do at Nexus Youth Services. This involves surveying youth who access services like Step One to...
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Nexus Thanks Marble Slab Mississauga!

Monday, August 18, 2014

On Saturday, August 9, Mohamed Yusef and his team at Marble Slab Mississauga welcomed staff and youth volunteers for Celebrity Scoop Night in support Nexus Youth Services....
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What Does Kid Cudi Think About Mental Health?

Monday, July 7, 2014

January 28th was a big day for mental health in Canada. Also known as Bell Let’s Talk Day, January 28th was a day when people across the country rallied together to raise...
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10 Tips for Good Mental Health

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Most people know that eating fruits and vegetables, staying hydrated, exercising regularly and getting enough sleep are key ways we can maintain our physical health. Being...
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Engaging With Youth at Nexus Youth Services: Sumaira's Perspective

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

The following is a post written by one of our Peer Youth Workers, Sumaira Khan. It has been adapted from a presentation she gave at the Children's Mental Health Ontario...
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Thank You for a Great Jolly Gingerbread Night!

Monday, December 16, 2013

The Nexus Youth Centre had a big holiday celebration this past Friday (December 13, 2013) inside the Glass Pavilion at the Mississauga Central Library. The event was called...
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​5 Tips for Managing Holiday Stress

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

It’s the holiday season, and for many people this time of year is full of happiness, laughter and merrymaking. But for some, the weeks leading up to Christmas, Hanukkah,...
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5 Reasons Gratitude is Good For You!

Monday, December 2, 2013

T’is the season of giving!  Regardless of which holidays you may choose to celebrate, the weeks between December 1st and the New Year is often a welcome period of time...
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​What is #GivingTuesdayCA?

Thursday, November 28, 2013

If you’ve been following us on Twitter and Facebook for the last little while, you may have noticed we’ve been promoting something called #GivingTuesdayCA, and you may be...
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1-2-3 FOCUS!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

You’re in the middle of writing a big test, but you can’t block out the sound of the clock ticking behind you. Your best friend told you a long story but you have no idea...
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​Anger, Stress & How to Cope

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Have you ever found yourself taking out your anger or frustration on a friend or loved one who has absolutely nothing to do with the reason you're upset? We've all been...
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What is NaNoWriMo?

Thursday, November 7, 2013

You may have heard that Nexus Youth Services is offering a writing group on Tuesdays during the month of November, but what you may not know is that it was inspired by a...
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Sleep: Why We Need It & What Happens Without It

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Many of us already know that sleep is important. Most people function much better when we get the recommended daily 7-9 hours of sleep, but did you know that sleep is...
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24 Comics That Capture the Frustrations of Anxiety Disorder

Thursday, October 24, 2013

A few weeks ago on our blog we shared a BuzzFeed post featuring 21 comics about depression. Recently, BuzzFeed published a follow-up to that post, this time featuring 24...
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Coping With Stress

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

You slept through your alarm and now you're late for work -- again.  You recently applied to a competitive college program and you're worried your grades aren't high...
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All About Anxiety

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Did you know anxiety is the most common psychiatric illness in the world?  Recently, our friends at MindYourMind.ca shared an infographic from Global Medical Education all...
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10 Free Mental Health Apps for Your Smartphone

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Have you been looking for a smartphone app to help you meditate, track your mood or simply cope with your mental health challenges? Our friends at PsychCentral.com recently...
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Nexus Youth Services Celebrates Thanksgiving!

Monday, October 14, 2013

On Wednesday, October 9th Nexus Youth Services hosted a Thanksgiving Celebration in the Glass Pavilion of the Mississauga Central Library. This event was an opportunity to...
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32 Ways to Improve Your Body Image Throughout the Day

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Did you know? You can and should feel good about your body! Your body is an incredible machine and it should be celebrated every day, but sometimes feeling good about how...
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Are You Worried About Something?

Monday, September 30, 2013

MindYourMind.ca is a great website with lots of super helpful mental health resources, including articles and coping tools. Recently, they shared a blog from their Content...
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You Are What You Eat: Healthy Eating Tips for Youth

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Studies have shown that teenagers often consume only half of the recommended servings of fruits and vegetables per day. Fruits and vegetables contain vitamins, minerals and...
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How Exercise Makes Us Happier

Friday, September 27, 2013

You've probably heard that when you exercise, your body releases feel-good hormones called endorphins, which can make us feel better and happier. But how exactly does this...
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21 Comics That Capture the Frustrations of Depression

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

This week, one of our awesome counsellors Andria stumbled across a great article on BuzzFeed highlighting some comic strips that deal with the frustrations of living with...
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Nexus Youth Services Annual Report Now Available Online

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Nexus Youth Services is proud to celebrate another great year with our 2012-2013 Annual Report. It's been a defining year and we've achieved a lot, including the launch of...
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Check out our new video!

Friday, July 5, 2013

In our latest video, youth who come to our drop-in space talk about what an awesome, fun and friendly place it is to hang out in. Newcomers are always welcome! Come visit...
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Nexus celebrates Child & Youth Mental Health Week with a new video!

Friday, July 5, 2013

May 5th-11th, 2013 is Children's Mental Health Week, and to support this event Nexus Youth Services has released a new video called It's Okay to Ask for Help featuring...
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