Drugs, Violence, and Gangs: An Urban Problem

Many urban communities are coping with the negative consequences caused by drugs, violence, and gangs.  Most often, a path of destructive behavior and poor choices starts in adolescence and stems from a lack of social supports, education, skills, positive influences, and basic needs not being met, such as physical or mental health.


For young people who are already at an elevated risk, it is vitally important to intervene before they start down a de­structive path.


Yo Bro Yo Girl Youth Initiative: A Proven Solution


Inspired by the real life experiences of Joe Calendino, Yo Bro Yo Girl Youth Initiative started in 2009 as an outreach program for youth at-risk of involvement in drugs, violence and gangs.


Complemented by the academic qualifications and educational background of Brenda Calendino, Yo Bro Yo Girl has developed a range of impactful, life-changing programs delivered in the classroom, out of school, and during school breaks.  The programs reach boys (Yo Bro) and girls (Yo Girl), aged 12 to 18 years, and allow older program participants to play a mentorship role.


Delivered at both the elementary and high-school level, program titles includes Taking it to the StreetsKeep it RealRespectful RelationshipsKnow means NoTeam Yo Bro, and Team Yo Girl.


Transitioning Youth from Risk to Resiliency


Yo Bro Yo Girl’s unique strength-based programs are designed to motivate and equip youth with the tools and resiliency to avoid drugs and violence, pursue education, and set positive goals for the future.  


With proven program success and rising community demand, Yo Bro Yo Girl became a fully registered Canadian charity in 2013 and now serves 450 at-risk youth in 9 schools across 3 school districts – Surrey, Vancouver and Chilliwack.  


We invite you to support Yo Bro Yo Girl and our journey to transition youth from risk to resiliency. Visit our Programs page for more details.