A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE BATHURST YOUTH CENTRE
Summer of 1989, the idea of a youth centre for Bathurst was born.
It was summer of 1989 when a motion was made by Cst. Jocelyn (Josh) Ouellette at a meeting at the Bathurst Police association to find a place where the Bathurst teens could meet in a relaxed atmosphere, enjoy music and conversation, and also find help if they needed it.
It was apparent to the police officers, at the time, that there was a need to provide the necessary direction and role modeling that young people required to continue life and become productive citizens in a beautiful community.
Hence the idea of a youth center for Bathurst was born. A youth centre would serve as a place of activity, a place to congregate, a place to seek guidance, and most importantly, a place the youth could call their own.
Josh Ouellette was truly motivated to make this project a reality as he saw too many kids with no place to go and trouble brewing. He also wanted the youth to have a safe place to go with something to do.
Fall of 1998, the Bathurst Youth Centre opens its doors.
It was on September 11th, 1998 that the Bathurst Youth Centre finally opened its doors after years of lobbying and fundraising.
The Bathurst Youth Centre is one of the longest surviving youth centres in Canada. The centre is independently run by a small staff and many volunteers. The impact of having a youth center was obvious, since a year after its opening, the youth crime rate dropped by 27%.
It is with great pride that Josh Ouellette sees, now and then, successful young people who have made use of the Bathurst Youth Centre over the years. He is regarded as the "father" of the Bathurst Youth Centre. It was his dedication, along with teams' dedication to the youth of the region, that fueled the project and turned a dream into a reality.
Josh Ouelette - Past President & Founder