Friday, July 13, 2018

Waterloo region’s first Indigenous Child and Family Centre

We’re excited to be building Waterloo region’s first Indigenous Child and Family Centre, from the ground up!

We began early in 2018, preparing a proposal for an innovative, Indigenous-led and Indigenous-supported Child and Family Centre. Executive Director Stephen Jackson presented the proposal to the region in March, and we were awarded funding in March.

Just last month, we launched a new website for the wraparound services that we offer Indigenous people and the general public in Waterloo. The Child and Family Centre page will evolve throughout our journey.

Blocks, playhouse, and other toys purchased for the Child and Family Centre

Our collection of toys will keep growing, too!

Meanwhile, we continue our search for the inviting, safe, accessible space that will be home to the AO Child and Family Centre. 
House with family members

Our journey has been supported by the Region of Waterloo and YMCAs of Cambridge & Kitchener-Waterloo, with whom we continue to collaborate. Recently, we started to build the friendly team that will get to play, learn, and build spirit with children and their family members. Ellie Murphy began as Supervisor in early July, and two facilitators will be hired later this month. The team will be guided by Elders and Knowledge Keepers to create spaces, programs, and services that celebrate Indigenous culture and support healing, wellness, and empowerment.

Our whiteboard is growing as we map out the tasks to be accomplished before launching our child and family centre in late summer or early fall.  

We’ll share the exciting steps in our journey and turn to you for input along the way . . . check this blog regularly or visit our social media pages for updates!

If you’d like to contribute to our journey or learn more about visiting the child and family centre once it is open, please call 519-208-5333 and ask to speak with Stephen. 

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