Parrsboro youth centre born out of tragedy

When Tom and Sharon Brown's daughter Courtney took her own life 16 months ago, they decided to help other youth in the Parrsboro area.

On Friday they helped open the Parrsboro Youth Society so kids can feel safe.

"Not all youth are involved in sports and other structured activities so we saw a void here in the community and the youth centre is hopefully going to fill that void," said Const. Dal Hutcheson.

"Her tragedy was the driving force behind this. Something good came out of something bad," said Tom.

Almost all of the supplies were donated and assembled by volunteers like Bailey Dunham.

"I've been trying to come down here every day to help do some stuff just to show I want to be part of this ," he said.

Most of the donations were anonymous, said Tom.

"It was like 10 Christmases all at once," he said.

Besides the movies and games there will also be a youth mental health counsellor available several days a week.

The centre is plastered with signs on how to get help.

"It's a place for them to congregate that's safe," said Shelly Richardson, regional director of the Kids Help Phone.

"They will not experience bullies and I'm really proud of the work that the Browns have done."

Audriana Smith heads the local youth council and says the space is needed in the community.

"A lot of kids are on the street hanging out and they just need a place to go and focus their energy," she said.

The Browns say their daughter would be proud of what they have done.

"She would be pretty ecstatic," said her father.

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