About Stratford/Perth Shelterlink

About Shelterlink

What We Do

Stratford/Perth Shelterlink provides Perth County youth ages 16-24, who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless, with shelter, basic needs, support, community aid and advocacy services.

Mission & Vision

Stratford/Perth Shelterlink exists to provide Perth County youth ages 16-24, who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless, with shelter, advocacy services and basic needs.

By providing homeless and at-risk youth with the basic needs of food and shelter, they will have more opportunities to make good life style choices, stay in school, find employment or attend counseling.

Our Funding Sources

The following information is for our 2021-2022 fiscal year: 

Our 2022-23 Impacts

Information coming soon. 

Shelterlink’s History


Started in 1989 as an Ad Hoc Committee called Youth Housing Needs.


In 1991 they received a Provincial Grant for $40k and created Stratford and Area Access to Independent Living, or S.A.A.I.L.


The Black Swan Coffee House Revival was started in 1991 as a fundraiser for SAAIL and continued to entertain Stratfordites most years until the pandemic.

In 1992, SAAIL opened Harbour House. The Bethel Pentecostal Church kindly offered their manse, at RR 4 Stratford free of charge. It had 3 beds for young men ages 16-21.


In 1993, Harbour House moved to 265 Ontario St. and combined the SAAIL offices with 4 beds and one emergency short-term bed.


In 1999, it moved again to 222 Brunswick St. as a rent-to-own Home.  It had 7 beds. The offices moved to Albert St.


In June 2001, Harbour House closed. 

The Government support they received only covered the running costs, and SAAIL could not keep up with the mortgage payments. 

Harbour House served 114 young men between 1999 and 2001.


By 2002, SAAIL’s YES (Youth Emergency Services) Men and Women Program had been established. It placed youth in local homes.

There was also the Turning Points Program with the Huron-Perth Centre for Children and Youth which provided preventative services.


By 2004, the organization had partnered with the Stratford Hospital to create LOFY (Living Options For Youth) in the old Conestoga College Nurses’ Residence.


In April 2007,  SAAIL was renamed “Stratford/Perth Shelterlink”