of our work is completed
at intake

Board Chair/Executive Director Message (2017/18 Annual Report)

Child Welfare is changing. We come together to strengthen our system and deliver consistent services across the province. Katelynn’s Principle—with the child at the centre of all our decisions—guides us through this change.

The new the Child, Youth and Family Services Act was proclaimed January 1, 2018 and has a child-centered, strength-based focus with emphasis on prevention and community support. We built our community-based service delivery model on these elements. We provide early help with our community partners. Ninety-three percent (44) of our community protection staff work in 32 community placements such as schools, hubs, counselling agencies and the police service. We complete 88% of our work at intake.

As of January 2018, we have the mandate to provide services to youth aged 16 and 17 years old. We have experience working with this age group through our Bridging the Gap program, which provided services to over 200 young people who are dealing with homelessness and mental health issues. This youth-centered program provides solid groundwork to build a voluntary youth service for this age group.

Over the past year we have trained our staff (85) on trauma-informed practice and worked with our partners to train community staff (320), initiating a community-wide response to children, youth and families that is trauma informed. We provide trauma-informed service within a safety framework and emphasis on family finding. We have connected our children and youth with 39 families.

Our children and youth in care numbers are declining as our work on permanency intensifies. We ended this fiscal year with our lowest number of children and youth in care (115). A shout-out to our foster and kinship parents who are true partners in helping our children and youth find permanency.

Even with this lower number, we have over representation of Indigenous and Black Canadian children and youth in care. We have 11% (13) Indigenous children and youth compared to 1% in Halton Region and 12% (14) Black children and youth compared to 3% in Halton Region. The Halton CAS, along with the Ontario Association of Children’s Aid Societies, will be looking at the systemic biases that result in this disproportionality and disparity.

The Society participated in a provincial acknowledgment and apology to Indigenous people. We committed to the following—reducing the numbers of children and youth in care and reuniting them with their families and communities, increasing customary care, providing full access to file information, developing relationships with their communities and service providers and ultimately supporting restoration of the Child Welfare mandate to Indigenous communities.

The Halton CAS is on a journey to fulfil these commitments. We are working with our community partners to make this happen. The Our Kids Network will champion this work.

In this time of accelerated change, we will pursue equity, continue to collaborate with our families and partners and remain committed to improving service based on evidenced-based practice, resulting in better outcomes for children, youth and families.

On behalf of the Board of Directors and Leadership Team, we thank our staff, resource parents, volunteers, community partners, YouthSAID Advisory Group and the Children’s Aid Foundation of Halton.

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Contact Us

Burlington Office 1445 Norjohn Court Burlington, ON L7L 0E6
Milton Office 325 Main Street East Milton, ON L9T 1P5
Toll Free: 866.607.KIDS (5437) Phone: 905.333.4441 Fax: 905.333.1844 TTY: 711 (TTY to Voice)
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