​Who We Work With

Direct Your Life (DYL) focuses on at-risk black youths from low income backgrounds with a criminal record who are experiencing complex institutional and emotional barriers after incarceration such as lack of family and social supports as well as lack of access to education and meaningful employment. DYL specifically focuses on youths who are not in education and/or formally employed, and who are engaged in delinquent behaviour or activities.


DYL aims to address these issues by engaging with at-risk youths’ through peer mentorship programs to establish meaningful connections as well as to guide them to a healthy and successful



Did you know*:

  • 70% of offenders read at a Grade 8 literacy level

  • 10% have a high school diploma

  • 97% are men

  • 80% of the men in jail have been physically abused as children (their abusers rarely went to jail)

  • 50% of prisoners are involved with drugs or alcohol

  • many have learning disabilities (e.g. ADHD or dyslexia).

*adult offenders