An open house event was held on Saturday at TAGS, to welcome the new Drop-In and Skate Park Director for the Weyburn Youth Centre.
Lindsay Mitchell, along with his wife Stacey and their three young boys, recently moved to Weyburn from Grenfell.
“I was the youth pastor in Grenfell, at the Grenfell Apostolic church there, and then we decided to come here and check it out. Well, I have family connections in Francis, so just a little ways away, so it made sense for something like this. Weyburn spoke to my heart as a community that we wanted to join and be part of,” said Mitchell.
Organizers refer to the Youth Centre as Weyburn’s best-kept secret. The TAGS facility includes an upstairs gym space, and downstairs has a variety of activities, including pool tables, air hockey, Foosball, board games, video games and even a canteen for snacks, which now has the tap function for debit cards.
“We’ve already connected with the library,” he said. “There’s a whole bunch of possibilities of teaming up with the library in all their things that they have already.”
He noted that movie nights, classes and workshops are just two of the possibilities.
“We’re dreaming of doing different kind of classes, like life-skill kind of classes, that we can work together with the community,” he said. “Be it maybe cooking, or designing cupcakes, or a paint night, something like that. Fun stuff.”
In addition to the TAGS facility and the Skate park, there is another building on the property that is underused.
“We have the next building, which we’re not even using to its full potential yet, so we could use it for, say if we wanted to do a little art show, or we could bring in a little band to do a stage kind of thing, because it used to be a church so it has the facilities for that kind of stuff, so it’ll be really fun,” he said.
Mitchell said meeting the kids is what he is most looking forward to with the job.
“Just meeting the kids,” said Mitchell. “Really, like that’s the best. I’ve already gotten to meet some of them and they’re coming back every night already, and that’s so exciting. That’s where it comes down to it, is having a place where kids can come and hang out, and feel safe and have a safe place for them to be, and to be able to encourage them in good life choices.”
He expressed the importance of making connections with the kids, and being willing to spend the time with them.
“Just to speak into their lives is so important,” said Mitchell. “Mentoring made such a difference in my life when I was a youth, being able to connect with adults that gave their time freely and that just spoke into my life about different things. Even if it was just teaching me how to tie a tie. So, there’s awesome things.”
Kids grades 5 through 12 are welcome to attend the drop-in centre and skate park, with special events being announced as plans develop.