Members of the SONAR youth group. L-R: Maddison Sam

What to do? – there’s an app for that!

Youth and adults in Fort St. James can now access a specially-created app to find out what is going on.

Youth and adults in Fort St. James can now access a specially-created app to find out what is going on and what services are available.

The SONAR project – SOcial Networking App for Resilience has launched thanks to eight youth involved in a research project.

After Emily Jenkins from UBC visited Fort St. James to do work on a research project looking  at youth mental health, she decided to do something about what she found during her research.

She hired youth from a diverse range of backgrounds, ages and social groups to form a group to work on projects to help provide youth with support.

One of their ideas was to create a web-besed application to help connect youth with activities and events to combat boredom and also to help them access resources in the community.

Tess Amyot, Lexi Joinson, Melissa Hilde, Danielle Sutherland, Maddison Sam, Raylene Erickson, Morgan Prince and Harry Goertz are the youth involved in the project.

They said their goals in creating the web-based app were to help bring people together, so people and especially youth, can access resources and take advantages of the opportunities and assets offered in the community.

They said many youth seem to be unaware of events or activities available in the community which don’t involve sports.

The application is web-based, so even people without smart phones can access the information on it and it includes an events listing, which anyone in the community can submit events to.

The hope is that the app will allow people to find out what is going on outside their social circle and open peoples’ eyes to other social activities and help address bullying issues.

Within such a small community, the youth said rumours about people can circulate more quickly and people can not get away from the stigma negative gossip can create.

The SONAR group said they have the advantage of their diversity allowing them to know what is going on amongst a broad range of social circles of youth.

To check out the app, access resources or submit an event or activity to the calendar, go to: sonaryouth.com