Safe Haven Shelter
Toggle Children's Mental Health Menu

Safe Haven Shelter


Located at Lutherwood's Betty Thompson Youth Centre, Safe Haven Shelter offers Waterloo Region youth a safe alternative to living on the street. Serving vulnerable youth 12 years of age and up to their 18th birthday who are at risk of being homeless, this program offers immediate admission and services for up to 10 youth on a 24 hour/7 day a week basis. In a safe, caring environment, staff coach youth to address their needs and help them return home (if appropriate) or to another safe living arrangement. 


Our program uses a client-focused, strengths-based approach to develop life and social skills, build self-esteem, manage emotions and promote health and wellness. The centre also offers: 

  • Food, clothing, laundry, shower facilities and access to medical care.
  • Assistance with family reintegration.
  • Assistance attending school and community activities.
  • Links to other community-based youth and family supports and services.

Safe Haven is a prevention-based service providing:

  • Family support
  • Runaway prevention
  • Skill-development
  • Educational support
  • Community resource support
  • Referrals to other community programs


Referrals are accepted 24 hours a day by contacting the Betty Thompson Youth Centre


The Safe Haven Program is supported by the Ontario Government, Region of Waterloo and Lutherwood Child and Family Foundation. Due to ongoing funding challenges, some services have a fee.

Safe Haven Youth Shelter - My Personal Journey