Virgin Mobile Program to Help Winnipeg’s At-Risk Youth

A new pilot project by Virgin Mobile Canada will benefit Winnipeg’s Resource Assistance for Youth (RaY).

Virgin Unite, the non-profit foundation of the Virgin Group, has announced Phones For Change. The program will give at-risk and homeless youth access to Virgin Mobile phones and plans while educating them on the importance of financial management and how to escape the cycle of debt. Vancouver’s Broadway Youth Resource Centre (BYRC) is also part of the program.

Each organization will nominate youth to receive a Virgin Mobile phone that offers a method of contact with employers, potential landlords, friends and support services.

While the plans are provided free of charge by Virgin Mobile, each organization will set up monthly bills that the youth are responsible for. The local organization will then use those monthly payments to contribute to the youth’s pre-existing debt.

The one-year program has a goal of expanding into more markets by 2013.

— Staff

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