Client Background

When Youth Haven first contacted Outside the BOX: Brand Development, to work with them on creating a new brand for their charity, they were looking to create a brand image that reflected the emotional turmoil their youth were going through, living on the street. Youth Haven wanted to convey this feeling to inform the public of the hardships, abuse and dangers living on the streets posed to youth and illustrate the importance of taking action to support Youth Haven. Youth Haven had three primary goals: 

  1. Educate and change the stigma associate with homeless youth in our communities.
  2. Provide a safe and supportive shelter for men and women, ages 16 to 24, in our community.
  3. Provide education, counselling and supplies for youth on the street. 

Using these goals as a guide, Outside the BOX: Brand Development began the design and strategic process of creating a brand that embodied the values and beliefs of Youth Haven while showing the positive results of their efforts within communities.

Our Challenge

Outside the BOX: Brand Development examined the goals of Youth Haven and saw that the greatest challenge was creating a brand that educated the public of the reality of why youth would choose to live on the street while maintaining a positive tone. This, in itself, would be a challenge with an established brand, not to mention a relatively new brand. In addition to this, Youth Haven had to establish itself in the communities the charity works within while building its visibility and credibility to mainstream donors and businesses. 

“Patrick is amazing at his craft! He and I got to work together on the prom event for Youth Haven Shelter for at risk and homeless youth. He took the time to listen to thoughts for advertising and nailed every single project to perfection and in a timely manner. Thank you Patrick”

Jennifer Kaplinski – Youth Haven

“I’ve had the pleasure of working closely with Patrick & Outside the Box supporting a local charity. Patrick’s work is exceptional – his graphics always balance the need to communicate key messages but still grab attention. The profile of that organization has increased significantly due to his excellent work.”

Jim Lowe – Creative Director: Assisting You Social

Our Solution Process

Outside the BOX: Brand Development saw an opportunity using Youth Haven’s historical ties with Barrie and its residence. By leveraging its long standing connection with the community, we looked to focus efforts in creating a brand that encouraged conversation and discussion through the established networking environment within Barrie’s business world. Using this strategy, Outside the BOX: Brand Development created the visuals that were direct, clear and emotionally charged that brought the reality of youth homelessness directly to the fore front.  All communication materials and online content would echo the same message and imagery and provide the facts about youth homelessness.


Our initial meetings identified several areas for improvement. 

  1. Youth Haven’s brand identity needed to be visual, unique, simple and memorable.
  2. New media assets would have to be created to fill the education roll.
  3. A standardization of brand colours, imagery and message would have to be established and maintained.
  4. Online content and communication would be used to promote and educate donors.
  5. Online and print media would be used to assist in allowing homeless youth to connect with Youth Haven and their staff.
  6. National and regional facts and statistics would be used to support discussions and create the motivation for change in communities.
  7. Brand awareness would incorporate verbal communication as a major component to promote and market Youth Haven’s brand.


Outside the BOX: Brand Development saw that creating updated and revised information materials, utilizing online touch points, creating an emotional story and the imagery to portray the reality of youth homelessness and developing strong relationships with local businesses, emergency services, municipalities and residences would create an environment that would create and inspire community awareness and benefit both the charity and the homeless youth living on the streets.

Design Solution

Creating a brand that touches hearts requires an emotional context. Outside the BOX: Brand Development created imagery that depicted a youth living on the streets to spur conversation about youth homelessness and to encourage the imagination to create an emotional context and be the motivation to take action. No one wants to be homeless and live without a home and a family. But the reality is that some youth seek the streets for protection and safety, just to find out there is even more danger in what they don’t know. Combining government statistics, images, colour and the real words, describing memories and experiences, from youth who have lived on the streets, paints a dramatic and dangerous picture that tugs on hearts and souls and pleads for the help of others to change this growing trend. Nothings asks more to make a difference than to experience, even for a moment, what its like to live on the lonely streets without hope.

Case Studies