The Doorway

  • Moving off the street
bottomView our Latest VideoIntro to the Doorway

Making Change

When a young person 17-24 decides they want to get off the streets they can come to The Doorway. We are a community funded business oriented space where young people choose to participate in a community run integration project, with space to think, community members to learn with and tools to plan their lives with their own ideas. Since 1988 The Doorway has been a bridge between street and mainstream cultures where participants progressively work towards sustainable economic independence (legal income and housing).

My Plan

  • Participants can access their personal MY PLAN accounts here.
  • MY PLAN is The Doorway’s software specifically designed to facilitate the 24 month planning process.
  • Try a demo!

Young People

  • Unfortunately young people do live on the streets in Calgary.
  • They have survived on their own utilizing their strengths and learning a life/culture we can’t always fathom.
  • They have a right to plan their own life- and in that learn what doesn’t work.

The Doorway

  • Non-traditional option for young people wanting to exit street life.
  • Project is self-directed and uses business enterprise concepts.
  • Since 1988 a consistent average of 7 out of 10 participants achieve personal goals to leave the street environment.


  • Community-delivered Project
  • Together community members and young people learn about what it takes to get off the street.
  • Both street and mainstream cultures are respected.
  • The Doorway is funded by supportive and engaged community individuals, businesses, groups etc.

How to Donate

Contributions to The Doorway support a long term, sustainable, and cost effective solution to the systemic social, economic and cultural factors that keep young people on the street.

We encourage you to donate what is reasonable for you when it is reasonable. To learn more about our monthly or yearly donation options, to arrange a meeting or request a presentation of how you can invest in The Doorway please contact (403)269-6658 or email As an organization we are committed to working with you to ensure the possibility of developing meaningful relationships with all our funders.

A charitable tax receipt with our CRA # is issued with a personal thank you upon receipt of each donation.

CRA Number: 13140 1226 RR0001


The History of the Doorway

  • 1985
  • 1 Jan 85

    Citizens of Calgary began to notice gaps in the social safety-net of our city. Local media told the stories of young people with no place to be able to use a food hamper. A significant community and provincial dialogue explored the reality that young people were living on the streets of Calgary.

  • 1987
  • 1 Jan 87

    A philanthropist with interest in social change initiated the opportunity to create a non-traditional approach which would assist young people seeking to leave the streets. Under the umbrella of Calgary Interfaith, writing and development of an initial proposal launched a pilot project named; A Youth Employment Initiative.

  • 1988
  • 1 Jan 88

    A Youth Employment Initiative opened its doors on Heritage Drive and Macleod Trail South.

  • 1990
  • 1 Jan 90

    A Youth Employment Initiative changed its name to The Back Door, a Youth Employment Society, and relocated to Macleod Trail near Heritage Station.

  • 1991
  • 1 Jan 91

    An evaluation conducted by Pacific Rim Research recognised the effectiveness and innovation of The Back Door in a Canadian Trend Report.

  • 1996
  • 1 Jan 96

    The Canadian Institute for Advanced Research concluded in an evaluation report that The Back Door’s approach was innovative and effective in assisting long term street involved young people.

  • 1998
  • 1 Jan 98

    The Back Door moved to Portland Street beside Blackfoot Trail and Ogden Road.

  • 2002
  • 1 Jan 02

    The Back Door moved to its current location on Ogden Road SE.

  • 2009
  • 1 Jan 09

    Smoke damage from a neighbouring business forces The Doorway to close its doors for 3 months, the first and longest break since launching the project in 1988.

  • 1 Jan 09

    The Back Door changes its operating name to The Doorway and launches MyPlan online.

  • 2011
  • 1 Jan 11

    In its 24th year The Doorway records having worked with 1000 young people and counting.

  • 2012
  • 1 Jan 12

    Virgin Unite and the Sprott Foundation award The Doorway with Eva’s Initiative’s Award in Ending Youth Homelessness

  • 1 Jan 12

    The Doorway rebrands with a new logo and website and the second version of MyPlan is launched.

  • 2014
  • 1 Jan 14

    The DOORWAY continues to work with up to 100 young people annually as funding permits.

  • 1 Oct 14

    The Association for Applied and Clinical Sociology presented The 2014 William Julius Wilson Award to Marilyn Dyck and the Doorway.

  • 2015
  • 12 Nov 15

    The Doorway were the recipients of a 2015 Western Legacy Award in the Sustained Contribution category.

  • 2016
  • 1 Jan 16

    The DOORWAY continues to work with up to 100 young people annually as funding permits.

where are we ? click for google map


Bay 10, 2808 Ogden Road S.E., Calgary, Alberta, T2G4R7


Mailing Address

Box 46067, Inglewood RPO, Calgary, Alberta, T2G5H7



Phone: 403 269 6658

Fax: 403 269 1207


Our Hours

Monday - Thursday: 8:00 am to 5:00 pm


Charitable Registration Number

13140 1226 RR0001

Get In Touch

Please send us a confidential enquiry !

Thank You ! Your email has been delivered.