For more than 70 years, Youth Unlimited (Toronto YFC) has been passionate about seeing young people attain their full life potential.
Since the 1980s, a major strategic focus has been to work with youth facing challenges related to poverty, violence, gang involvement, family breakdown, and spiritual impoverishment.
Now in 2020, we are serving in neighbourhoods all over the Greater Toronto Area. Our hope is that by cultivating relationships with caring staff and volunteers who will mentor and cheer them on, they will be able to bring about positive change to our city – both now and in the future.
Specifically in South-Central Etobicoke, our vision is that every young person will be transformed by God’s love and life-changing power and that churches rediscover their connection and value to the youth and families in our community.
Our work began in the summer of 2013, with the launch of the Lakeshore Soccer League. Founded as a program of Capstone Community Bible Church, the Lakeshore Soccer League now runs under the banner of Youth Unlimited in partnership with numerous churches in the area. During this time, Andrew Ironside was our sole staff in the Etobicoke-Lakeshore community.
In 2017, Capstone Jiu Jitsu was developed under the banner of Capstone Community Bible Church in partnership with Youth Unlimited. It was at this time that Becky Cripps (who was coordinating the program) transitioned into the role of South-Central Etobicoke Youth Outreach Coordinator. In this new role, Becky began to oversee the staff team in SC Etobicoke, as well as other programs in the area.
In 2018, Capstone Jiu-Jitsu began to function under the banner of Youth Unlimited. At this point, the number of youth our team were in regular contact with was 350+.
In the Spring of 2018, our staff team recognized the need to build up young leaders in SC Etobicoke and thus Level Up was developed with the hope that we will see transformed young leaders, transforming our city.
In the fall of 2019, we were excited to add a new program to our team, in partnership with Youth Unlimited’s city-wide ministry: The Young Parents Group!
Katie Ogiba, along with a team of volunteers, started our Etobicoke Young Moms group in the Lakeshore. This was an exciting step for our ministry team as we have been eager to bring wholistic care to youth in the community; this ministry offers support and hope to young mom’s 15-25 in the neighbourhood.
This past spring 2020, our team – along with the rest of the world – responded to Covid, moving some of our programming to virtual gatherings and postponing others. We thank God for some new funding and support, which allowed us to bring meals and food to families in need in this season.
We also thank God for bringing along our new team members: Jon and Meghan Matthews, and Naomi Walton, to lead and support our ministry programs and the youth of our community!