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Our staff are knowledgeable through years of lived & working experiences related to youth homelessness, LGBTQ2S+ identities, Indigenous populations, mental health, substance use problems & disorders, & developmental & learning disabilities. 

We are advocates for long term change for youth.

Staff ensure youth understand and are informed on their rights in education, health, housing, employment and relationships. Our staff are committed to connecting youth members with allies and support networks in the community.

Meet Our Staff

Darlene Thompson

Executive Director
Darlene is a Registered Nurse by profession, practicing at Belleville General Hospital and then as a VON. She is a business entrepreneur and, in 2007, was presented the “Women in Business Award” for PEC.
Darlene was born in the County and resides in Picton with her husband, Blaine, and has three grown children and eight grandchildren. Knowing that positive youth development is rooted in relationships, this is the primary focus in all areas of theROC programs. 
Through her longevity and commitment to the agency, Darlene ensures that the operations and vision of theROC continues.

Shannon Collins, BA Psych

Case Manager

She has extensive training and background in supporting youth who have been, or at risk of being, commercially sexually exploited and has worked alongside the legal system to develop safety plans as well as obtaining restraining orders to protect these victims. She is a strong advocate and takes a youth-led approach in her work. Shannon has experience working with youth who have behavioural challenges, are struggling with substance abuse, are living with mental illness, managing anxiety and depression, and experiencing homelessness. She has vast skills in crisis intervention, conflict resolution, case management, navigating the mental health and justice systems, as well as assessing risks and developing/implementing safety plans. With compassion and understanding, Shannon works with each youth to help them build on their strengths, accomplish their goals and attain personal growth.

Sarah Michel, BAA Beh. Psych

Case Manager

Through her education, her focus of expertise was in Applied Behavioural Analysis (ABA), counselling approaches (CBT, DBT, ACT, etc.), and the abnormal psychology of child and adult development. With a background working in various social service fields and diverse communities of people, Sarah has committed her career to assisting others in achieving their goals and continuing to learn and evolve. Originally from London, Sarah worked closely with Deafblind individuals with complexities for 6 years, as she is passionate about advocating for others and ensuring quality of life is maintained. In previous employment, Sarah was working in Dual Diagnosis as a Counselor with Pathways to Independence, supporting young and mature persons in; behaviour management, medication supervision, and case managing adults transitioning into independent living. Sarah’s experience is largely focused on maintaining a positive rapport with individuals she works with and encouraging independence and connection in one’s community. Since moving to Picton, Sarah is dedicated to learning and experiencing more of what the County has to offer and contributing back in any way possible.

Whitney Shantz, OCT

Academic Support Coordinator

After 10 years working with young people in various capacities at the Prince Edward County Public Library & Archives, Whitney decided to switch gears and joined the team at theROC, where she now has the privilege of coordinating and executing the daily activities at the PEC Youth Centre, having been bestowed with the loving title of “ROC Mama”. Whitney, and her husband Andrew, have three wild children who help inform and inspire her work each day. Whitney is currently the co-chair of the Athol-South Marysburgh Public School Parent Council, and tireless advocate for youth voices in PEC.

Meet Our Board

theROC Board of Directors is composed of passionate community members with a range of backgrounds and education. The Board meets monthly and oversees governance and investment management while supporting the Executive Director in the sustainable growth of the agency.

Alison Kelly

Board Chair

Alison successfully advocated for changes to the Corporation of Prince Edward and City of Belleville taxi bylaws to protect youth, vulnerable people, and those living with a disability. Alison is the founder of PEC Period Party, a community project that seeks to raise awareness on period poverty in PEC, fundraises for essential hygiene products and creates a safe space for menstruating people to normalize talking about menstrual health.

Alison is a volunteer on-air host and DJ with 99.3 County FM and serves as a member of the Athol Recreation Committee. She also ran as the 2018 Ontario NDP Candidate for Bay of Quinte and was labeled by local media as an “outspoken advocate.”

Alison graduated from Ryerson University with a Community Engagement, Leadership and Development certificate and holds professional certifications such as Project Manager Professional (PMP), Information Technology System Management (ITSM), & Business Analyst.

David Fox

Vice Chair

David is currently a volunteer firefighter, now in his 44th year.  He is past chair of the Prince Edward Police Services Board, and is still a committee member for the Community Safety and Well Being Plan.  David is past chair and remains as board member of the International Student Exchange Ontario which, among other responsibilities includes escorting students to Europe. 

David is a Board member for Community Care for Seniors Prince Edward.  One of his responsibilities is being the ’55 Alive Driver’s Course’ instructor. David is also an executive member with the local Retired Teachers of Ontario, and volunteers at the Picton United Church Food Bank. 

Given his educational background, David is excited and proud to be a board member for The ROC, supporting youth in our community.

David and his wife Pat, have two married children and two grandchildren.

Bill Barrett


Bill is a longtime ROC volunteer, having served as Treasurer for several years, along with other volunteer positions in the County. He remains retired and spends a lot of his time raking leaves!

Megan Jaquith


Megan lives in Belleville, while spending many weekends at her family’s property in Leeds in the Thousands Islands. She is actively involved in her church and is a member of the Order of the Eastern Star, allowing her to support and give back to her community in different ways.

In her free time, Megan enjoys quilting, cooking and baking with local produce and ingredients, yoga, spending time outdoors and playing with her two West Highland Terriers – Annalee and Poppy.

Neil Shepherd


He is committed to giving back to his community, especially youth, to help them build the skills and resilience to be successful in their endeavours. In February 2022 Neil was fortunate enough to join the Board where he can share his knowledge and experience with the existing members to help make a difference in the lives of the youth. When he is not working you can usually find him roaming the County with his wife, twin daughters and their two Boston Terriers.

Tom Harrison


“My perspective on youth development, experiences as a social worker, teacher and community volunteer are closely aligned with the values and mission of theROC. I am happy to contribute as a board member.”

Employment Opportunities

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