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A supportive place, where skills are developed and confidence is built, can make a tremendous difference for families living with special needs. Our programs provide participants with a warm, caring setting where they can feel welcome and safe, knowing they’re surrounded by others who understand.


Coffee Club

Our Coffee Club gives youth and adults with special needs a place to connect with friends and feel at home.

This drop-in social group is open to people with disabilities, who are age 16 and older. Coffee Club meets two Mondays each month, from 7 to 9 p.m. Each night includes a planned social activity, such as:

  • Creating art
  • Exercising
  • Playing games
  • Watching movies

Sometimes, we meet for dinner at different local restaurants, and attend community events and festivals together.


*Coffee Club is currently meeting virtually on a weekly basis.


Coffee Club is facilitated by Carmen Sutherland. As a co-creator of the program, she’s been running Coffee Club for more than five years.

For more information on our Coffee Club, please call Carmen Sutherland at 519-500-7153, or email her at [email protected].

Support Groups

Belonging to a community of support is paramount to family wellness. The sharing of experiences strengthens and builds capacity to deal with the challenges and joys of parenting a child with special needs. It reduces isolation through mutual understanding and the potential to create meaningful connections.  WRFN provides the following group support opportunities for families:


School Issues Support Group

This peer-led group provides support, advice and a safe environment for parents who have questions or concerns about school issues affecting their children with special needs.


Kaleidoscope Kids

A free peer-led drop-in program in Waterloo for parents and siblings of children with special needs.


A New Chapter: Families Moving Forward

This peer-led group is for parents/caregivers interested in preparing for the future of their youth/adult family member with a lifelong disability.


Ask A Self-Advocate

Do you need to look at a challenge you are facing with a new perspective? Would you like to bounce ideas off someone who's been there? Cristina was diagnosed with exceptionalities as an adult, and she is passionate about sharing her lived experience. You can meet with Cristina to discuss your own questions and concerns, and hopefully gain new insights and ideas. This program in open to individuals with disabilities, their families, or professional supports.


For more information on Ask A  Self-Advocate please contact Cristina Stanger at [email protected]. To request a booking please complete the request form.