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Comments Off on Understanding VACFSS’ Indigenous Core Cultural Competencies   |   Stories
Understanding VACFSS’ Indigenous Core Cultural Competencies

Understanding VACFSS’ Indigenous Core Cultural Competencies

In August 2019, VACFSS finalized a key initiative to formally recognize how Indigenous cultural ways of knowing and being are integrated into our policy and practice. While VACFSS has been weaving Indigenous cultural knowledge and practice into our programs and services for many years, the newly defined Indigenous Core Cultural Competencies (ICCC) are an important […]

Comments Off on Youth Advisory Council Strategic Plan   |   Stories
Youth Advisory Council Strategic Plan

Youth Advisory Council Strategic Plan

In 2020, the VACFSS Youth Advisory Council (YAC) will celebrate 10 years since it was created. For two of our members, they will have been on the committee since the beginning. It has been quite a journey and we are constantly amazed at what we have achieved and how far we have come. For most […]

Comments Off on Staff Spotlight: Patricia Phillips, Strengthening Families Coordinator   |   Stories
Staff Spotlight: Patricia Phillips, Strengthening Families Coordinator

Staff Spotlight: Patricia Phillips, Strengthening Families Coordinator

Patricia supports families and fathers at VACFSS. Tell us about your background. I am from the Tobacco Plains Indian Band located in Grasmere, B.C., which is close to the USA and Alberta borders. I always knew I wanted to work with First Nations people, but in what capacity I wasn’t sure. Moving to Vancouver, I […]

Comments Off on Caregiver Voices: “I get the peace I didn’t have as a kid by providing it to these kids”   |   Stories
Caregiver Voices: “I get the peace I didn’t have as a kid by providing it to these kids”

Caregiver Voices: “I get the peace I didn’t have as a kid by providing it to these kids”

Eric Schweig is a Canadian actor of mixed Inuvialuk, Chippewa-Dene and German heritage. He opens up about the joys and challenges of being a new foster caregiver to two siblings. As a former foster child himself, he knows all too well the obstacles that youth can face when growing up in care. “I was the […]

Comments Off on Strengthening Our Relations: Restoring Family within Community   |   Stories
Strengthening Our Relations: Restoring Family within Community

Strengthening Our Relations: Restoring Family within Community

On February 27-28 2019, Indigenous community members, youth, Elders and First Nations gathered to explore and learn about restorative child welfare practices at VACFSS’ Strengthening Our Relations: Restoring Family Within Community conference. The sold-out conference opened with a welcoming and prayer by Elder Orene Johnston from the Squamish Nation and a song by Elder Bruce […]

Comments Off on Staff Spotlight: Gavin O’Toole, Residential Resources Manager   |   Stories
Staff Spotlight: Gavin O’Toole, Residential Resources Manager

Staff Spotlight: Gavin O’Toole, Residential Resources Manager

Gavin’s career spans 33-years working with families and youth from across Canada—now he’s ready for his next challenge as the VACFSS Residential Resources Manager. Tell us about you background. I grew up on a farm in the Ottawa Valley, meaning a lot of farm work and rural country living when I was younger. My heritage […]

Comments Off on Cultural Connections: Homecoming Reunification Ceremonies   |   Stories
Cultural Connections: Homecoming Reunification Ceremonies

Cultural Connections: Homecoming Reunification Ceremonies

Homecoming ceremonies are an extremely important milestone to honour the work of families who are reunited with children or youth after a period of time in care.

Comments Off on Employee Engagement Committee   |   Stories
Employee Engagement Committee

Employee Engagement Committee

The Employee Engagement Steering Committee was established after the agency-wide employee engagement survey was conducted in 2016.  Through the feedback we received from staff, the committee has developed the employee survey action plan and has been actively working on objectives focused on strengthening and streamlining agency communication and fostering a sense of belonging.  Some of […]

Comments Off on MCFD Protocol Agreement   |   Stories
MCFD Protocol Agreement

MCFD Protocol Agreement

On October 3, 2018, VACFSS and the Vancouver/Richmond Service Delivery Area (VRSDA) of the Ministry of Children and Family Development signed a new Protocol Agreement which commits the parties to working in partnership. VACFSS Chief Executive Officer, Bernadette Spence, and VRSDA Executive Director, Sheila Robinson signed the Protocol which is intended to ensure coordination of services, […]

Comments Off on Youth Voices: My Culture Saved Me   |   Stories
Youth Voices: My Culture Saved Me

Youth Voices: My Culture Saved Me

Alex is a youth-in-care who is reclaiming his Dene heritage and reconnecting with his family. My name is Alex and I am an 18-year-old proud Dene person who belongs to the people from the Northwest Territories. However, just four years ago I was missing half of my identity—I did not know my culture, my territory […]