Child Welfare

Native Child and Family Services of Toronto (NCFST) is Child and Family Well-being Agency that is mandated to provide child welfare services through the Child, Youth and Family Services Act (CYFSA) in the Province of Ontario. NCFST delivers legislated child welfare services that are integrated with culturally grounded and holistic prevention services. This approach sets our organization apart from mainstream child welfare and achieves the implementation of services that focus on child and family well-being.

In certain situations, children and youth are unable to remain with their caregivers and must be placed in alternative care. NCFST explores alternative care through Kin Care, Customary Care, and Foster Care options that meet the standards set out by the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services (MCCSS) and provide safe, stable and nurturing homes rooted in the traditions and values of the child’s Aboriginal community. To support this, NCFST works in a holistic way with the family, the child, the alternative care providers, as well as the child’s band or community.

In situations where all alternative care pathways have been exhausted, the Courts may decide that a child must be placed with a Child and Family Well-being Agency underExtended Society Care. NCFST Children’s Services Workers develop, plan, review and supervise the long-term placement of these children and youth to comply with MCCSS standards while honouring their Aboriginal identity through cultural supports.

In recognizing the historic abuse of adoption practices affecting Aboriginal communities, NCFST will only consider permanency through adoption in rare situations where reunification of a child with their biological parents or alternative care providers is not successful. Only Aboriginal applicants will be considered for adoption of Aboriginal children and all applicants must be willing to maintain connections to the child’s family of origin as well as the Aboriginal community or band.