SAULT STE. MARIE INNOVATION CENTRE
Wednesday marks the official launch of Gateway Algoma (www.gatewayalgoma.ca), the Algoma region’s first and most robust online youth portal created by youth, for youth.
Gateway Algoma is an online resource for Sault Ste. Marie and Algoma district youth ages 12 to 29 to find local information on youth-friendly activities, jobs and training, events and activities, resources, school information and health.
It aims to encourage and support youth to become better connected with their community, be more informed, and to easily access important information relevant to them. The website is youth-focused and user-friendly with a simple design to help find information quickly.
“I am so pleased to see this project come to fruition,” said Sault Ste. Marie Mayor Christian Provenzano. “Not only does it respond to a need identified by our youth, it also provides us the opportunity to further increase engagement and support youth initiatives in the future.”
“We hope that Gateway Algoma will help make a difference in the community by encouraging youth involvement through shared information on various social media channels,” said Patti McGonigal, Project Coordinator with YouLaunch, the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre’s youth entrepreneurship division.
“This is a living website, meaning although in its early stages now, as youth become involved and the project moves forward, it will hopefully continue to grow to serve the region. From research to implementation, we’ve been very lucky to work with eager and supportive youth and community members to make it happen.”
Gateway Algoma has been made possible by a collection of dedicated partners and a variety of organizations committed to youth in the Algoma District.
It is a collaborative project led by the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre (YouLaunch and Community Geomatics Centre), with support from Algoma Public Health (Algoma Youth Engagement Network), the City of Sault Ste. Marie (Mayor’s Youth Advisory Council), and the NORDIK Institute (Social Enterprise and Entrepreneurship.)
Gateway Algoma will share or post about content relating to education, finance, volunteering, job opportunities, parents’ commitments to their children, social enterprises, and much more. It will also have a focus on connecting youth to arts and culture through graffiti, drama, sports, and musical events.
“The Algoma Youth Engagement Network consists of over 50 members from diverse organizations that impact young people in our region, and we are excited for the launch of Gateway Algoma!” said Corina Artuso, Youth Engagement Coordinator, Algoma Public Health.
“This portal has been developed in partnership with young people in response to the need identified by youth during the 2014 Youth Forum. Gateway Algoma can be a valuable resource for connecting youth and adult allies in Algoma to the information, resources and opportunities that are available.”
"It's rewarding to see the priorities that youth have identified being taken seriously and acted upon," said Sean Meades, Acting Director of NORDIK Institute.
In December of 2016, Gateway Algoma held a contest for the creation of the logo. The only requirements were to use the text Gateway Algoma, be created by a student, and to incorporate youth of Algoma.
Upon closing the contest the top logos were posted to social media and the winner was decided based on the most “likes.” Grace Swain from St. Mary's College was the winner and her design went on to be digitalized by Trisha Designs. The Gateway Algoma logo seen on this webpage is the combination of these two designs to create what is used today.
Thoughts and comments are encouraged to help make this the best website it can be! Tell us what you think by visiting www.gatewayalgoma.ca and fill in the comment box on the bottom right corner. For updates about Gateway Algoma and youth friendly initiatives in Algoma, follow @GatewayAlgoma on Facebook and Instagram.