In 1999, the Mayor’s Youth Advisory Committee (MYAC) was established through the Community Policing Committee’s Safe City Campaign.
In March 2001, MYAC hosted a Youth Forum at The Optimist Club to determine the recreation and leisure needs of youth ages 14-20 years in Niagara Falls. One of the outcomes of the Youth Forum was a need for a Skate Park in the City. Subsequently, numerous public meetings were held and surveys were completed to further substantiate the need.
On November 26, 2001, the MYAC made a request to City Council requesting funds and a site for the Skate Park. City Council approved the request and allocated funds for the design and construction of the Skate Park and also allocated space on the site of the Community Centre.
On June 18, 2005, MYAC, together with the City of Niagara Falls, held the Grand Opening of the Skate Park. MYAC raised and contributed more than $12,000 to assist the City with the Skate Park.
In April 2005, MYAC hosted another Youth Forum at The Optimist Club to gather updated information regarding the recreation and leisure needs of Niagara Falls High School age youth. The results indicated that a Multi-Media Arts Centre was needed in Niagara Falls. The results of the Forum were forwarded to the Parks, Recreation and Culture Department for inclusion in the Master Plan.
In April 2011, the Mayor’s Youth Advisory Committee hosted a third Youth Forum at the MacBain Community Centre to determine the current needs of youth in Niagara Falls. The top three issues raised were:
- Improving the entertainment and retail options within Niagara Square
- Building a more youth friendly transit system
- Building a more entertaining place where teenagers can participate in leisure activities.
Since the last youth forum, members of MYAC actively participated in meetings regarding the new Transit Master Plan and the 2011/12 MYAC implemented a rotating Youth Drop In program called “Chill Out” to offer additional activities for youth to participate in.
In 2013, MYAC conducted a series of Youth Surveys regarding transportation and recreation and presented the results to City Council. These topics were selected based on their importance at the Youth Forum the previous year.