Rose of Durham was started in 1988 by a group of concerned citizens, many of them active in the Catholic faith community. Rose of Durham has maintained full member status as a Catholic Charities social service agency since 1993.
Originally, the plan was to start a new mothers’ residential home for young women. Research concluded that what was needed was a day support service for expectant and parenting young people. A residential component was not required.
Rose of Durham started as a support service for single mothers of any age. Shortly after opening the mandate became specific to helping young parents under the age of 21.
Rose of Durham started with one staff member, a receptionist who also taught life skills to the young women. Rose of Durham relied heavily on volunteer support at that time. The agency was originally located above Vanderheyden’s Garage in south Oshawa.
In 1991 an Executive Director was hired. This individual provided counselling and managed the agency and volunteers.
Rose of Durham’s next move would be to 221 King St. E. in the fall of 1992. This facility was a house and included extra office space to house more staff, accomodate more programming and childcare for clients while they attended programs. At this time Catholic Charities funding was secured.
A counselling staff was added in 1992 and then another in the spring of 1995.
In 1994 a Volunteer Coordinator was hired.
Again in 1997, the agency moved. This time to the second floor of Simcoe Hall Settlement House.
In 1998 additional funding was secured through Catholic Charities, to open a satellite office in Port Perry. This office was shared with Catholic Family Services of Durham. In 1999, satellite offices in Pickering and Beaverton were also opened, again sharing space with Catholic Family Services.
In 2001 funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation allowed the agency to hire a Resource Development Coordinator who’s job was to focus on grant writing and promoting the agency.
In 2002 funding was obtained from the Ontario Early Years Challenge Fund to open a Resource Centre. Grants from the Regional Municipality of Durham and the F.K. Morrow Foundation also supported this initiative.
The Oshawa office found its current location in November 2002, at 200 Bond St. W. The space offers a ground floor storefront location with space for reception, counselling offices, a meeting room and the Resource Centre for Young Parents.
Our funding sources at present are: ShareLife through Catholic Charities, Ontario Early Years (through the Oshawa YWCA), the Region of Durham, Knights of Columbus councils across Durham Region, the Regional Municipality of Durham, community based donations, private and corporate donors along with fundraising efforts.
In 2003 the agency’s tagline, Challenging Young Parents to be Strong Parents was developed.
In 2006 our vision statement was developed and mission statement, revised.
In 2006 Rose of Durham received funding from the Laidlaw Foundation to support the Young Mother’s Advisory Group (YMAG).
The Shandex Group donated $15,000.00 in 2006 to support the Young Parents’ Resource Centre.
In the summer of 2007 Rose of Durham extended its age mandate to include clients up to the age of 24 years.
In September 2007 Rose of Durham expanded the Teen Mom School program to two classes, each meeting twice per week.
In September of 2007 Rose of Durham received funding from Coordination Services for Children and Youth Durham for four staff to participate in Make the Connection training provided through The First Three Years, as a result, Rose of Durham was able to expand it’s programming regionally by offering this new program.
In December of 2007 at our annual Christmas Party dads in attendance were surveyed and expressed an interest in attending more programming, as a result Family Night which offers a relaxed social environment with both female and male staff in attendance to offer support and guidance if required. In addition, in June of 2008 one time funding became available through the Best Start Sub Hub program allowing Rose of Durham to begin offering a program Just for Dads!
In January of 2008 funding became available through a private foundation to fund a Book Club. This program has run two sessions successfully to date and will continue on in 2009.
In June of 2008 Rose of Durham celebrated its 20th Anniversary. The agency was delighted to receive a certificate from Catholic Charities recognizing and commending our 20 years of community work.
In January 2010 Rose of Durham became an accredited United Way of Ajax/Pickering/Uxbridge agency, and began offering individual counselling to young fathers up to the age of 30.
In January 2011 Rose of Durham extended its age mandate to include female clients up to age 25 and male clients up to age 30.
In January of 2014 Rose of Durham launched a new Infant Mental Health Stream of programming and applied for accreditation through Children’s Mental Health Ontario.
In January of 2015 Rose of Durham received approval to move forward in the Children’s Mental Health Accreditation process and will be working hard in 2017 and 2018 to prepare for their site visit scheduled for mid 2018.