Family-Based Care

Family-based care is a way of providing family life for someone else’s child in your own home.

Children and youth are referred for family-based care by the department of Children, Seniors and Social Development.  These children and youth could be in care for a multitude of reasons, including physical, sexual, or emotional abuse, domestic violence, parental addictions, neglect, no parent or family member is able to care for the child, etc. Unlike adoption, the child remains the legal responsibility of the Department of CSSD and/or their birth parents. Carers provide a safe, secure and stable environment for these children and youth and in many cases will work towards reuniting the child with their birth family.

What Supports do we Provide?

  • 24-hour support, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
  • Frequent visits and regular telephone contact from a Key Assets Program Supervisor.
  • Opportunity to take breaks as needed.
  • An excellent package of financial support that values your skills as a carer.
  • Regular support group meetings with other carers to share experiences and knowledge.
  • Child and Youth Care Worker support as needed.
  • Organized activities for you, your family and the child(ren) placed.
  • Educational supports to help you negotiate with schools and promote the child’s educational needs.
  • Access to a therapist for consultations and individual therapy for any child placed with you, as appropriate when needed.
  • A comprehensive training program.

The Need for Family-Based Care

Family-based care heals children from their circumstances in a secure, supportive environment.

Children in family-based care have experienced abuse and/or neglect, and come from families who were struggling with addiction, mental health issues and/or family violence. Family-based care provides the opportunity for them to address and heal from their circumstances in a secure, supportive environment.

If you choose to become a family-based carer, please be assured you will not be doing so alone. Along with a generous care allowance, you’ll receive training and support from our experienced team of therapists, social workers, and other professionals.

Who Can Become a Carer?

Our carer applications are open to everyone regardless of gender, race, culture, sexual orientation, home ownership or income status.

The essential qualities we look for include:

  • Being aged 25 or older
  • Being able to obtain a clear certificate of conduct and clearance from a child protection record check
  • Having a valid driver’s license and access to a vehicle
  • A strong desire to help children and young people
  • An understanding of the difference between caring for your own child and a child in family-based care
  • An awareness of how taking in an at-risk child will affect your immediate and extended family
  • The ability to cope with a young person’s emotional needs and behaviour
  • A willingness to help a child bond with and feel affection for other people
  • An ability and willingness to help a child in your care deal with their anger
  • Access to a strong, solid network of family and friends who can help alleviate the pressures of family-based care
  • A willingness to be patient while seeking the child’s trust and acceptance
  • A willingness to share your life experiences with the child in your care
  • The ability and willingness to have a child in your home for a short- or long-term basis
  • If coming forward as part of a couple, have been in a relationship for at least two years