YMCA Homelessness Assistance – First Stop

Preventing homelessness and recruitment into crime

Each year, hundreds of people arrive at Montréal’s Central Bus Station alone and without resources. For many, one of the first people they meet during their first week in the city is a pimp or a drug dealer. 

The First Stop program was created in 1999 to prevent homelessness and the recruitment of individuals – mostly youth and women – for criminal purposes. Operating out of the Montréal’s Central Bus Station, our community workers provide frontline services to vulnerable people who are arriving at, passing through or hanging around the bus terminal. 

Our areas of action include:

  • identifying and approaching vulnerable or at-risk individuals;
  • referring and accompanying these individuals to the appropriate resources (food bank, emergency shelter, legal support, etc.);   
  • offering psychological support (short-term and emergency interventions);
  • helping individuals return home or to an environment that is more favourable to their social reintegration (family home, therapy, etc.). 

For any questions or assistance: 
Central Station: 1717 Berri Street
Phone: 514 284-2247

Program partners
Ministère de l’Emploi et Solidarité sociale du Québec 
La gare d’autocars de Montréal
Ville de Montréal

“I am very grateful to the First Stop team for listening to me without judgement and for helping me get back on track.” 


“Since my first day in Montréal, the First Stop team has been there for me. No judgement, with respect and always out of a love for their work. One day, I decided to start putting myself first and go to therapy. I am now back on my feet and staying strong. Looking back, I can say that, to a certain extent, I am still alive because of them. Thank you and much love.” 


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