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May 2023

Native Child and Family Services of Toronto is Seeking Board Members

Native Child and Family Services of Toronto (NCFST) is the largest urban Indigenous multi-service agency with a child protection mandate in Canada. We have been providing holistic, culture-based prevention and child and family well-being services to the Indigenous community in the Greater Toronto Area for over three decades.

Our circle includes over 350 staff who deliver over 140 programs across 20 locations serving 8,000 individuals annually. The agency was developed by community for community to address the intergenerational legacy of residential schooling and mainstream child welfare.  NCFST works with communities, partner agencies, Indigenous governing bodies, and governments to develop and deliver services and promote safety, health, wellness and prosperity for Aboriginal children, youth, and families across Toronto and Peel regions.

It is a particularly interesting time to join the Board of Directors at NCFST. Indigenous people represent the youngest, fastest growing, and most diverse population in Canada. Ontario’s process of child welfare modernization, the federal transformation of Aboriginal child welfare through Bill C-92, and the push by all governments and major institutions to address systemic racism create a dynamic context for the growth and innovation ahead. We are also entering an exciting time in our agency as we are in the process of transitioning from a colonial model of leadership with an Executive Director, towards an Indigenous model of governance in the form of a leadership council. We are actively developing this new model and will begin implementation in early 2024.

For individuals who are invested in the wellbeing of Indigenous children in Toronto and Peel, this is an opportunity to get involved in an innovative and multifaceted organization that has accepted a sacred responsibility for the next generation.

We are currently seeking self-identified Indigenous individuals to sit on our Board of Directors. New members will stand to be voted in at our Annual General Meeting on June 29th, 2023, and are expected to serve a minimum of a one-year term, though we encourage Directors to serve for multiple years.  Board members are required to attend monthly board meetings (minimum of nine (9) total in the year), and to join and participate in one of our board committees (active committees include Executive, Governance, Finance, and Indigenous Spirit Fund). Board members may be required to contribute to strategic planning and related governance activities.

For current board vacancies we are interested in candidates with one or more of the below qualifications and/or lived experiences:

  • Five (5) years or more experience serving on non-profit boards.
  • Strong connections to the Indigenous community in Toronto and/or Peel
  • Knowledge of Indigenous culture, ceremony, and systems of traditional governance
  • Demonstrated history of success with philanthropy and securing private donations
  • CPA designation
  • LLB designation

Prospective candidates must either live or work in the City of Toronto or Peel Region.

Qualified individuals are invited to submit a letter of interest along with a current resume to [email protected]

We will be accepting nominations until positions are filled.

April 2023

NCFST Announces the Agency’s 2023 – 2028 Strategic Plan

Native Child and Family Services of Toronto is pleased to announce the release of the Agency’s 2023 – 2028 Strategic Plan. This plan was co-developed with community and will guide our work over the next five years.  Miigwetch to our community members and staff at NCFST for their guidance and providing a solid direction for the Agency to remain Child Centered, Family Focused, and Community Driven.

Download the Strategic Plan

February 2023

Honouring The 2023 Indigenous Spirit Awards

The Indigenous Spirit Fund at Native Child and Family Services of Toronto is excited to announce that nominations are now open for the Honouring The Indigenous Spirit Awards! Established to honour Indigenous children and youth who’ve shown resilience and spirit in their efforts to break down barriers and achieve their full potential, this year’s Awards Ceremony will take place on March 30, 2023.

Any child, youth, or young adult up to 29 years of age currently receiving any service from an Indigenous agency in the Greater Toronto Area is eligible for nomination. They must be nominated by a staff member of the agency.

Deadline for Nomination: February 14, 2023

For more information, click HERE or email [email protected]

January 2023

Miigwetch RATE-MY-AGENT & Snap Up Real Estate for your donation

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We greatly appreciate RATE-MY-AGENT and Snap Up Real Estate’s donation to our Native Youth Resource Centre (NYRC) Drop-in program located in Toronto’s west end. This program engages Indigenous youth who come to access services at the NYRC and this donation will contribute towards the underfunded Youth Drop-In and Outreach program activities which focusses on providing Indigenous youth with the skills, mentorship, and training they need to find and maintain housing and achieve their full potential.

October 2022

National Day for Truth & Reconciliation: Calls to Action Webinar – Recording

On Friday, September 30th, 2022 Native Child and Family Services of Toronto hosted a webinar and simultaneously released an annual report back to community addressing the priorities for redesigning child welfare to help reduce the number of Indigenous children in care. Listen to our recorded webinar as our special guests join in a conversation around the importance of the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation and the Truth and Reconciliation’s Calls to Action.

Joined by our host Bob Goulais, Knowledge Carrier, Alita Suave, Singer and Language Instructor, Rollin Baldhead and the following special guests:

  • Hon. Chystia Freeland, Minister of Finance and Deputy Prime Minister of Canada
  • Hon. Merrilee Fullerton. Ontario’s Minister of Children, Community and Social Services
  • John Tory, Mayor of Toronto
  • Mae Maracle, NCFST Board President
  • Jama Maxie, Former Youth in Care
  • Jeffrey Schiffer, NCFST Executive Director
  • Ron Hodson, NCFST Director of People and Culture
  • Melissa Hamonic, Associate Director of Holistic Services
  • Jennifer Turner, NCFST Manager of Child and Family Wellbeing

Download the Indigenous Child Welfare Reform Annual Report to Community

* Our apologies, the audio fades in and out through parts of the webinar.*

Indigenous Child Welfare Reform Annual Report to Community

On Canada’s first NDTR, Native Child and Family Services of Toronto (NCFST) announced its commitment and dedication to decolonize Indigenous child welfare services in the city of Toronto. Over this past year, NCFST went through a critical examination of our child and family wellbeing services, including standards, service eligibility criteria, assessment tools, and current practices. This report addresses priorities for redesigning child welfare with the intent to help reduce the number of Indigenous children in care.

Many thanks to community who participated and help us every day in our continuous efforts to heal and find a better way forward.

Annual Report to Community

As part of our annual report back to community for 2022, our Quality Assurance and Decolonization team has prepared a separate report on the activities, reform and discussion ideas provided by both the Community Advisory Circle and various Staff consultation processes, including the Staff Advisory Group.

Transformation in Action at NCTST Report

September 2022

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation: Calls to Action

September 30th is Canada’s National Day for Truth and Reconciliation (NDTR). On this day, we honour the children who never returned home from Canada’s residential schools along with the Survivors, as well as their families and communities. Remembering the painful and tragic history and acknowledging the ongoing impacts of residentials schools is a vital component of the reconciliation process with Indigenous peoples.

On Canada’s first NDTR, Native Child and Family Services of Toronto (NCFST) announced new commitments dedicated to continuing our journey to decolonize Indigenous child welfare services in the city of Toronto. Over the past year, NCFST went through a critical examination of our child and family well-being services, including standards, service eligibility criteria, assessment tools, and current practices.

NCFST invites you to join us on Friday, September 30th at 10 AM – 12 PM where we will provide a report back to community addressing the priorities for redesigning child welfare to help reduce the number of Indigenous children in care. During this virtual event we will have special guests join in the conversation around the importance of this report and we will share some exciting new announcements.

This event has passed, please find the recording: https://youtu.be/-QNmN1jxlcg

August 2022

Decolonizing Child Welfare Webinar Learning Series #6 – Recording

Webinar #6 of our Decolonizing Child Welfare Learning Series focused on the services we offer when vulnerable children must be removed from unsafe circumstances and placed in alternative care. In this webinar, we addressed some of the most crucial questions arising from the experience of Indigenous children and families with colonial child welfare systems.

  • How do we meet the holistic needs of children and youth placed in care? What are the dimensions that guide us?
  • How do we work alongside the Alternative caregivers to guide them, in helping our children and youth who are placed in their homes?
  • How do we work to keep children connected with culture, family and community while they are in care?
  • How do we work to keep children to family, extended family and community and culture?

We were joined by our host Terri Jaffe, and the following panelists:

  • Rosary Spence, Cultural Resource Worker
  • Jeffrey Schiffer, Executive Director
  • Courtney Dorion, Children’s Services Supervisor
  • Jama Maxie, Community Member
  • Mark Atanasoff, Director of Quality Assurance & Decolonization

Click to access the presentation file

Below is the recorded webinar available for viewing.

June 2022

2021-2022 NCFST Annual Report

Native Child and Family Services of Toronto is pleased to release our 2021-2022 Annual Report. We would like to express our deep gratitude to our partners, funders, and community members for supporting us through this past year of uncertainty, growth, and development. Please read the detailed report on the progress our agency has made during such a challenging year.

In addition to our Annual Report, we have also released our Audited Financial Statements for 2021-2022.

This year’s Annual Report and Financial Statements, as well as previous Annual Reports and Financial Statements, are also available on our Policies and Publications page.

Join us for our Virtual Annual General Meeting on June 23rd, 2022

Native Child and Family Services of Toronto cordially invites staff, community members, funders, partners,
and all our friends to join us in our Virtual Annual General Meeting on Thursday, June 23rd, 2022.

This event has passed.

Once registered, you will receive a confirmation email containing the link to attend and the option to add this webinar to your calendar of choice.

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