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Syl Apps Youth and Secure Treatment Centre

Syl Apps Youth and Secure Treatment Centre (SAYC) is the only facility for adolescents in Canada comprised of the three secure programs: Detention, Custody and Treatment. The centre was accredited as a Children’s Mental Health Centre in 2003.

Secure Treatment: Syl Apps has two ten bed, co-ed units for a maximum of 20 Secure Treatment beds. The Secure Treatment Program is a provincial resource and is mandated by the Child and Family Services Act. Youth are admitted through the Family Courts from all regions of the province. Youth who are in the Secure Treatment Program at SAYC may or may not be Young Offenders. All Secure Treatment residents do, however, have a diagnosed mental disorder and as a result have caused or attempted to cause serious bodily harm to themselves or someone else. The Secure Treatment Program is designated as a hospital to maintain clients under the Ontario Review Board - clients who have committed an offence but are not criminally responsible for their actions and/or are unfit to stand trial.

Specialized Mental Health Youth Justice Program: Syl Apps Currently has 30 beds in the Youth Justice Program for secure custody and detention. Each of the three living units houses 10 residents.

As part of our continuum of services for youth with demonstrated mental health needs, this specialized program is available to male youth aged 12 – 17 at the time of the offence who are identified as requiring enhanced clinical supports.

Staff trained in Dialectical Behaviour Therapy coach residents to identify skills deficits that interfere with their life goals as the focus for personal skill development.

Youth are supported by an inter-disciplinary mental health Team made up of a variety of disciplines, including: Art Therapy, Child & Youth Workers, Native Service Workers, Nurses, Psychologists, Psychiatrist, Recreations Staff & Therapeutic Recreation Practitioners, Social Workers and Teachers.

To access this specialized program the Youth Justice facilities and /or Probation Officers across the province may make referrals by completing an intake package and contacting the Placement Coordination Unit for Central Region at 416-314-3832 ext 208/209.

Halton Attendance Centre: In 2006, Kinark Child and Family Services began a partnership with the John Howard Society and E. Fry in the new Halton Attendance Centre. Kinark provides training, clinical assessments and other programs to the attendance centre.

Programming: Kinark and the Syl Apps Centre are committed to evidence based or promising practice in the delivery of treatment programming. All youth, through their treatment team have access to a myriad of programming and groups. Specific options include: anger management, family therapy (FT may be extended for an additional 6-8 sessions to provide transition for families within the geographic areas), healthy sexuality, substance use/abuse, therapeutic recreation, art therapy, pet therapy, dual diagnosis, concurrent disorders, sexual offences, gender specific programming, psychiatric and psychology services, wellness/health services, case management, transition and discharge planning. Kinark is also committed to outcome analysis in cooperation with the Ministry of Children and Family Services.

Research and partnerships: Kinark and the Syl Apps Centre are committed to research and have developed partnerships with a number of universities and colleges to foster initiatives in the area of youth justice and mental health. Furthermore through specific partnerships the Syl Apps Centre provides educational and practicum/clinical training opportunities for a number of professional schools such as social work, Child and Youth Work, Psychology, Nursing and Psychiatry.