CAYR* COMMUNITY CONNECTIONS was originally founded as the AIDS Committee of York Region in 1993 and formally incorporated as a registered charitable organization in 1996.

Our Mission and Vision
To create safe, confidential, and inclusive spaces and services in York Region where people can access dignified support and meaningfully engage in self-determined pathways to well-being. We envision an informed, healthy, stigma-free and compassionate community.

Who We Work With
We offer specialized and combined programs for:

  • People living with HIV/AIDS (newly diagnosed to long-term survivors)
  • People affected by or at risk of HIV and Hep C
  • People who use drugs
  • People who identify as 2SLGBTQ+
  • People supporting vulnerable and marginalized community members

Our Values

Inclusion
We cultivate an environment where individuals and communities can equitably and meaningfully achieve their full potential.

Self-Determination
We uphold human dignity and the rights of individuals and communities to make informed choices.

Well-Being
We nurture a holistic approach to well-being that includes physical, mental, emotional and spiritual aspirations.

Collaboration
We build upon the collective strengths of individuals and communities.

Our values are rooted in the principles of:

  • Greater and meaningful involvement and engagement of people with lived experience of HIV/AIDS, drug and substance use, as well as 2SLGBTQ+ identified community members.
  • Harm Reduction
  • Anti-Racism/Anti-Oppression

We at CAYR acknowledge that we are on the traditional territories of the Wendat, the Haudenosaunee, and the Anishinaabe peoples. We acknowledge that these are the treaty lands of the Mississaugas of the Credit. We would also like to acknowledge the Chippewas of Georgina Island First Nation as our closest Indigenous community. These are communities whose presence here continues to this day, and we thank them and other Indigenous peoples for sharing this land with us. These peoples have worked to ensure we all have clean water, clean air, and a healthy land, passing that legacy from one generation to the next. It is equally our responsibility to help take care of the natural world and help be part of the effort to ensure that legacy is passed on to future generations.

*“CAYR” is phonetically pronounced /keə(r)/ and is based on the word “CARE” as in “to care for” persons served by the agency.