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From time to time, the Waterloo Region Family Network (WRFN) is asked to distribute information on behalf of third parties. WRFN provides general information to self-advocates and families of children with special needs. The information provided on this website is not a recommendation, referral or endorsement of any resource, therapeutic method, or service provider. WRFN is not responsible for any information or services provided by third parties. You are urged to use independent judgment when considering any resource.



Lutherwood Youth Job Connection

Lutherwood Employment Services is still offering support during the pandemic. While working remotely, they've continued to try to reach out to job seekers as best as possible in our community. Check out these posters and opportunities, if you or someone you know is currently looking for employment.

Youth Job Connection Workshops

Job Searching during Covid19

Job Posting Facebook groups

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Mighty Hawks

 Mighty Hawks is committed to working with individuals with developmental disabilities in the Kitchener-Waterloo community.  Our mission is to help each participant foster a greater independence in the community, build meaningful relationships and feel confident in pursuing their personal goals.


This is achieved through interactive workshops focussed on developing work ready skills with an emphasis on hands-on learning, encouraging participation and social interaction with dedicated one-on-one support from Mighty Hawks facilitators, a passionate group of students at Wilfrid Laurier University. This enables participants to build valuable relationships with facilitators and each other, with individualized support in a fun environment every step of the way.

Learn more about the opportunities to be found through the Mighty Hawks program by clicking here.

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Early Childhood Development in a Time of Pandemic workshop series

Families Canada (FC) and the Centre of Excellence for Early Childhood Development (CEECD) are pleased to launch Early Childhood Development in a Time of Pandemic, a webinar series created in response to the current COVID-19 climate. The webinar will highlight some possible effects of the pandemic on young children’s behaviours and emotions and discuss ways to support children, families and service providers through a series of presentations and open plenary. 

Isabelle Vinet, an expert in the prevention of disruptive behaviours during early childhood and Executive Director of the CEECD, will facilitate the series.
Every Wednesday starting April 22, 2020, at 1 PM ET in English and 2 PM ET in French. 

How do I join?
Please register in advance for this webinar series at this link!
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

What’s on the agenda for this week? 
Introduction and welcome
Presentation on self-regulation in early years
Q&A and plenary
Wrap up
If you have any questions on the topic Self-Regulation in Early Years please send them by Tuesday, April 21, to kristell.lemartret@umontreal.ca and we will try to answer them all during the webinar. 
Upcoming topics include emotional expression, play, prosocial behaviour, peer relations, brain development and more. Stay tuned! 

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Wilfred Laurier University offering CBT and Addiction course online

In response to the COVID-19 situation, all in-person workshops scheduled for the spring and summer have been cancelled. We are hoping to have additional online programming available for the fall. In the meantime, we have added more sections of our courses that are already available online. We will continue to add as many sections as we can, but it will depend on the availability of instructors.


Updates on Laurier's response to the COVID-19 situation are posted regularly on the coronavirus information page.


We know many of you are essential workers who are doing incredible work to support your clients, patients and students right now. Thank you for being the superheroes in our communities.


Available Online Courses


Fundamentals of Addiction
Addiction and the Family
Trauma and Addictions
Engaging Complex Clients: Working in Addictions with Specialized Populations



Foundations of Trauma
Trauma and Addictions


Cognitive Behaviour Therapy

Level I: Fundamentals of CBT
Level II: CBT with Mental Health Disorders


Register here for any online courses.

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Breastfeeding Workshop & Support

Connect with Breastfeeding Buddies for some online breatfeeding support both prenatal and post. 

Click here to register for the Wednesday 2-4pm workshops on prenatal breastfeeding.

Click here to register for the Tuesday & Thursday at 10am to discuss popular breastfeeding topics and ask questions.

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Foundations in FASD-FREE Online Training

Foundations in FASD is a basic training course intended for everyone that will come into contact with individuals with FASD including all sectors of work, families, individuals with FASD, spouses, and the general public. This foundational level training program provides the perspective of individuals who have FASD, is evidence-based, employs a culturally sensitive approach, and is presented in a way that is responsive to the learners needs. This online basic training course will take on average two hours to complete.


Level 1 training will provide knowledge and understanding of:

an overview of FASD assessment and diagnosis in Canada
an introduction to FASD interventions and promising approaches
the effects of prenatal alcohol exposure on the fetus
the impact of alcohol on brain development
issues related to stigma and FASD
strategies for prevention and support
barriers to prevention and support
the signs and symptoms of FASD across the lifespan


A certificate will be provided to each participant upon completion.
Register here.

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CNIB Workshop Series

National Empowerment Workshop Series II:

This virtual workshop series will be offered every Thursday, 12 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. Eastern Time, from April 9, 2020 until June 25, 2020. The National Empowerment Workshop Series II will provide participants with an opportunity to immerse themselves in virtual educational workshops focusing on empowering people to live the lives they choose. 

Registration required.

To register for this program, please contact Larissa Proctor, Team Lead, Accessible Community Engagement at Larissa.Proctor@cnib.ca.


Come To Work: Online Boot Camp Workshops.

This 6-week virtual workshop series will be offered every Wednesday,1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Eastern Time, from April 8, until May 13, 2020. Put your best foot forward, brush up on the skills you need to compete and be successful in the workforce. Come to Work Boot Camps are weekly virtual sessions that explore a variety of topics. 

Registration required.

To register for this program, complete the Microsoft Office Registration Form.

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Community of Heart programming

Community of Hearts staff have been working diligently behind the scenes in order to develop some programming that can be delivered to you remotely. See flyers attached for upcoming program details. 


Participants can access programs online in the following ways (beginning this Friday, April 3rd):


Mondays: On Community of Hearts’ YouTube channel and Community of Hearts’ Facebook page, join Ariel, Independent Hearts Program Coordinator, for a cooking lesson video to follow along with from the comfort of your home. Want to purchase the visual aid recipes? Contact Shera at info@communityofhearts.cato get yours via email!


Tuesdays: Check Community of Hearts’ Facebook page for fun posts and printable activities to do from the comfort of your home.


Wednesdays: On Community of Hearts’ Zoom account, join Jerushia, Program Manager, from noon to 1 pm for a Lunch & Learn. Bring your own lunch to your laptop or desktop computer, log in to the Zoom room (password and meeting ID provided Wednesdays via email) for a facilitated check-in and to connect with other Community of Hearts participants!


Thursdays: On Community of Hearts’ YouTube channel and Community of Hearts’ Facebook page, join community partners for a wellness, gentle movement and stress management video to follow along with from the comfort of your home.


Fridays: On Community of Hearts’ Facebook page, join Jerushia, Program Manager, from 1:30-2:30 pm for a reading and discussion about Harry Potter & The Philosopher’s Stone (by J.K. Rowling). 


Access our YouTube channel here. Videos will be uploaded gradually. This content is available to the public.

Access our Facebook page here. This content is available to the public.

Zoom Meeting invitations will be sent to your email inboxes Wednesdays before the Zoom Room with Jerushia opens. This is not available to the public - only current participants will receive the Meeting ID and Password.



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Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Practice Lecture Series

The Continuous Professional Learning Committee (CPLC) is excited to bring the Foundations in Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Practice Lecture Series to the members of the Children and Youth Planning Table! This $350.00 value, 15-part series focuses on promoting early mental health and wellbeing during the first 1,000 days of life. The series aims to raise awareness and understanding of the unique needs of infants and toddlers in order to promote healthy social-emotional development in the early years and reduce the likelihood of poor mental and physical health outcomes in youth and childhood. 


How to Register:

Registration is now open and will remain open until 2022,  click here to learn more and register. Please ensure you register as Guest specifying Conestoga PRC (as the Host Agency). A unique email must be used upon registration for access to the session handouts, and to receive session details and reminders. You will also be required to create a personal user account at www.IMHPromotion.ca to access the recorded content. You will have access to the 15  Live webinars, which are scheduled to launch every 2-3 weeks between January and August 2020. Furthermore, you will have access to the recorded videos until September 2022 to view the lectures at your own pace or to revisit the material for your own learning. You will receive a certificate upon completing the training. Coupon code will be provided for free access.

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IMPORTANT WRFN UPDATE RE: Programming & Events

After much consideration, conversation and concern for the health and safety of the families and individuals supported through WRFN, our staff and volunteers, and for the larger community, we are cancelling all our support groups, social groups, events, and in-person program activities until further notice. With growing concerns around COVID-19, we feel this is the appropriate and responsible approach to take at this time. Updates will be provided as to when regular programming, activities and events will resume.


Thank you for your understanding and support as we navigate and respond to these challenging times together.


Sue Simpson

Executive Director          

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