Our Core Values
Accept. Empathize. Advocate. Inspire.
The Selfling Teen Support Foundation’s 4 core values embody how we approach our community. Agencies serve youth in a number of ways: grief and trauma counselling, job skills, gender and ethnic diversity, disabilities, drugs, and homelessness to name a few. The Selfling Teen Support aligns itself completely with all agencies working for the healing and empowerment of young people and in order to do so we adopt certain facets of those agencies’ own missions so that those young people can feel confident that they are being heard and understood by a community and the efforts to help them are consistent.
Growing up is tough!
The Selfling Teen Support Foundation is a federally incorporated Canadian nonprofit organization that was founded to help bridge the gap between teens and the support many of them so desperately need. We created the Selfling Teen Support App in response to bullying, self-harm, and other anxieties that teens experience and, in some cases, demonstrate online. Since we started our initiative, in 2014, we have expanded Selfling’s scope. We felt that our effect would be better felt if we built a well rounded resource gathering tool for all teens regardless of age, race, academic performance, or household income.
We did our research and we found that there were very few places that teens could go online – via browser or mobile app – that could offer them peer support as well as ease of access to community support. We couldn’t find anything available for teens that would act as an all around resource to help answer all their questions. Further, though many teens might know that resources and agencies do exist, having the confidence to take advantage of those resources – let alone asking someone for help – can become a challenge all its own.
Where do I Turn?
Teen support agencies of every stripe have worked tirelessly for decades to help lessen the burden teens carry. Whether that burden be a pursuit of acceptance, dealing with bullies, struggling with depression, fighting sexual/gender stigmas, or finding the right career path, these agencies go to extraordinary lengths to bring valuable – and relevant – resources to youths and to try to make them feel like they are not going it alone. Sadly, much of these agencies spend just as much effort trying to spread awareness and gaining the trust of teens as they do delivering their services.
Still so many teens never do find the help or guidance they need. These groups, many staffed almost exclusively by volunteers, only have so many tools available to reach teens.
The agency says…
- Call our our hotline.
- Visit our website.
- Like us on Facebook/Follow us on Instagram.
- Talk to us.
And a teen says…
- I’m too scared to call.
- I don’t know what I’m looking for.
- What if my friends find out?
- I don’t want to look like a freak/charity case/suicidal/…
Having all the agencies and the programs is great but it is a small comfort for teens who don’t know they exist or are forbidden by social stigma to take advantage of them.
Selfling changes that dynamic by offering a new support chat app that will put teens in a new and constructive environment propelled by support and empowerment.
Selfling creates a triangle of support that allows teen help agencies and volunteers in the community to become the foundation on top of which teens – the Selflings – can begin to depend on for support in overcoming their challenges. Whether those challenges are healing and escaping or learning and growing, the Selfling app provides teens with the opportunity and the confidence to take charge and chart their own course.
Teens Know What Support Is
There is a saying that “The rising tide raises all ships.”
We know, through our research, that teens do enjoy helping out and supporting each other. Sometimes it takes a little boost to get the conversation going but, even in some of the darkest times, teens will back each other up. Many times it comes down to a shared experience and knowing what your peers are going through that helps a youth to discover his or her potential as a helper. With Selfling, we recognize that and we show you that with every classmate, teammate, or regular kid in the neighbourhood that you lend a hand or an ear to, you grow and rise as well.
Answers to all the Questions
With the support and involvement of agencies and volunteers in Calgary and the surrounding area, Selfling can offer teens a whole grab bag of professional support, helpful tips, fun facts, and opportunities for skill building and network building.
Wait? What does this have to do with emotional and mental health support?
Just because you are a teen doesn’t mean that you are hurt. And just because you’re hurting doesn’t mean that healing is the only thing you have to be doing.
Selfling is your virtual utility belt. A way to speak your mind, find answers to all your questions, and build new and powerful connections.