Karen Stevenson

Office Administrator

Our Staff: Karen Stevenson, Office AdministratorAs the Office Administrator, Karen is involved with many aspects of the agency including scheduling of daily activities, accounting, data management, human resources. Karen’s organizational skills, leadership abilities and background in upper administration and management contribute to the high standards of service delivery that are provided to Venture Academy youth and families. In addition to the managing the diverse administrative responsibilities of a youth treatment program, Karen is one of the friendly voices that our families have grown accustomed to hearing when calling into our office and she takes great pleasure in making sure they are each taken care of.

Lisa Olenczuk

Receptionist

Our Staff: Lisa Olenczuk, ReceptionistLisa’s favorite part of being a member of the Venture Academy team is having the opportunity to observe the positive changes made by the Venture Academy students. She is inspired by the accomplishments achieved during the youths’ treatment stays.

In Lisa’s role as receptionist, her caring and vibrant personality shines through when speaking with Venture Academy families, team members and other professionals. Lisa is involved in a wide range of administrative tasks including scheduling family calls and visits, youth appointments, recreational activities and overall contributing to the administrative team and tending to the needs of the Venture Academy families. As a mother of a teenage son, Lisa enjoys attending hockey practices and tournaments as a family; they spend much of the summer boating and enjoying the beautiful Okanagan.

Zara Parker

Assistant to Executive Director

Our Staff: Zara Parker, Assistant to the Executive DirectorZara joined Venture Academy in 2005 as a Youth Counsellor, with an education in Social Services / Substance Use Counselling. Her experience includes positions of Child and Youth Care Worker in two lower mainland high schools, Youth Support Worker with an independent living program and Activity Supervisor at a substance misuse counselling program. After a number of years supporting Venture Academy’s struggling teens in making positive behavioural changes, Zara went on to obtain education in office administration and returned to Venture Academy as Assistant to the Executive Director. Zara’s frontline experience, administrative training and broad knowledge of the agency contribute to her ability to assist the Executive Director and Venture Academy Team in admissions, human resources, policy and procedure, data management and outcomes reporting, among other general operational duties.

Teresa Hay

Director of Services

Formally trained in business management and administration, Teresa has seventeen years of management and front line experience working with youth presenting emotional difficulties, addictions issues and severe behavioural challenges. Teresa has provided a safe, supportive and behaviourally managed home care environment for youth, assisting them in making positive behavioural changes as well as developing warm and helpful relationships with parents of youth in her care. Teresa’s role as Director of Services with Venture Academy is the coordination of “in house” Venture Academy services and resources, assisting and supporting host family homes, linking clients to program protocol and procedures, as well as administration implementation and parent liaison. Teresa’s extensive experience makes her a valuable resource and support for staff and families alike.

Neil Steinke, B.Ed., M.A.

Liaison

Our Staff: Neil Steinke, LiasonNeil Steinke received his Bachelor in Education from the University of Alberta in Edmonton and his Master’s degree in school administration from Grace College and Seminary located in Winona Lake, Indiana. Recently he has begun course work toward a certificate in special education. He has spent 35 years administrating and teaching in independent and public schools in Alberta and British Columbia.

In addition to program development and staff leadership at the school level, Neil has lead professional workshops and seminars and served on provincial committees and boards. Passionate about helping students and families, Neil is able to guide families to the best choice of action for their teen needing support and encouragement. His experience with and understanding the needs of youth and families enables him to provide vital, important information to prospective parents and youth that are considering Venture Academy. Neil lives with his wife Wilma in Kamloops, BC. They have 3 grown children and 2 grand children. They attend Kamloops Alliance Church and are avid cross country skiers.

Joy Morris

Administrative Assistant

Cera Brown

Administrative Assistant

Our Staff: Cara Brown, Administrative AssistantAs a member of the Administrative Team, Cera is involved in coordinating many of the day to day activities and appointments for Venture Academy youth, their families and our staff. In addition to reception, Cara’s dynamic role includes assisting in admissions, medical administration and records management. Cera brings to Venture Academy a unique combination of experience and education in both Human Services and Customer Relations. In furthering her desire to work with people, she is currently working towards her Bachelor of Arts in Community Criminal Justice.