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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.



Integration Action for Inclusion School Experiences Survey

This is aimed at learning about peoples' experiences in the school system both during COVID-19 and more generally. It is a longer survey (33 questions) aimed at trying to understand peoples' views and thoughts about schooling during COVID-19 and inclusive schooling in general. It also includes an opportunity for you to let us know your thoughts about a possible name change and if you have any time to spare as a volunteer. It should take no more than 15 minutes to complete. 


Complete the survey here.

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Kerry's Place- Foundational Family Services & Groups

Kerry's Place has lots of learning opportunities for families and groups children with ASD.


Check out their Foundational Family Service catalogue here for learning opportunities for parents.

Check out their Groups catalogue here for chldren & youth to participate in & learn new skills.

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CYPT Youth Impact Survey Data Briefs

Waterloo Region, October, 2020 - The Children and Youth Planning Table (CYPT) in partnership with the Canadian Index of Wellbeing (CIW) at the University of Waterloo, UNICEF Canada, and the Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) partnered to develop the prototype of a new child and youth well-being survey.  Aligned with the Canadian Index of Well-being (developed by UNICEF Canada), the “Youth Impact Survey” measures and monitors the well-being of children and youth.
In July of 2020, the survey was open and piloted for young people, aged 9-18 in Waterloo Region to respond to questions across nine focus areas of well-being that will be shared over ten briefs and provide feedback on the survey tool itself.  About 300 youth in Waterloo Region took the survey and we are pleased to announce that we are sharing more preliminary data.  This is the second release of the Data Briefs, this time, focusing on: physical health, learning, participating and play, which follow up the September release of data surrounding belonging and mental and emotional health.
We hope that this information is helpful to those working and supporting children and youth in our community.  The data can help inform the current state of well-being, and can be used in conjunction with additional data and/or as a conversation starter with young people to better understand their specific state of well-being. This release is the next step in sharing information from the Youth Impact Survey, and we look forward to sharing further information across the other focus areas, as well as disaggregated data.
CLICK HERE to review the Youth Impact Survey – Data Briefs
Please note: The accessible version of these briefs will be available soon.

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Impact of Covid-19 for parents

Infant Mental Health Promotion (IMHP) at the Hospital for Sick Children, in collaboration with the Ontario Centre of Excellence for Child and Youth Mental Health (The Centre), Kids Brain Health Network (KBHN) and Children First would like to hear families’ thoughts about how our child and youth mental health system can improve the quality of services for children under 6 throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. We'd like your help to invite them to complete the survey below, which focuses on understanding:

  • What information or services were accessed during the COVID-19 pandemic, in order to support your youngest child's well-being; and
  • How we could help to improve the quality of this information and services as we continue to move through the pandemic (and perhaps a second wave).

The information we collect through this short and completely anonymous survey will help us to strengthen the supports that are available to families.

Please forward this survey to parents/caregivers in your Canadian network, as well as to any partners who could help spread the word about this survey. Eventually a summary of survey results will be available on the IMHP website at www.imhpromotion.ca.

If you have any questions about the survey, please email: magali.bouhours@sickkids.ca.

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Family Compass Waterloo Region-Back to School bucket

Family Compass Waterloo Region has added a Back to School bucket on their Covid-19 webpage. Parents can access resources and articles pertaining to children and youth returning to school during the pandemic. Resources are being added daily. 



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Not Another Webinar

We are all navigating a lot of uncertainty!  As we work toward transitioning children back to child care and classrooms, a group of community agencies have come together in the interest of creating resources.  “Not Another Webinar” has been created with parents and educators in mind, to support finding tools and strategies to have a smooth and successful transition for not only the children, but for the parents and educators as well.


The short videos and compilation of valuable resources you’ll find at Not Another Webinar were created by our community partners on topic areas such as Strategies for Challenging Behaviour, Tapping Into Your Resilience and more.  They were put together specifically to help you save time and get exactly what you need, right now.  Not another webinar is a collection of short and easy to implement lessons that will make your transition back to a classroom that much better!”


This resource was put together by staff from: Kidsability, KWHab, DSRC, EarlyON, Early Childhood PRC, SNAP, SNRC and of course the CYPT.

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Survey on Family perspectives about partnership with teachers in a time of Covid 19

Since March of this year, families have had the challenge of providing education at home in a time of a pandemic. For families who have children with disabilities, this has been an even more challenging time, with many families seeing their regular, IEP-mandated supports stopped or dramatically changed. Families may have also seen differences in interactions with teachers and other school personnel. Now, as students begin to return to school in the fall, it is critically important for families to share their needs to support their child with a disability to be successful.


Researchers from Queen’s University have partnered with the Family Alliance of Ontario to develop a short online survey (approx. 20 minutes to complete) to gather family perspectives about partnership with teachers in a time of COVID-19. They are looking for volunteers to participate in this survey – you are eligible if you are a caregiver of a child with a disability who is in the Ontario K-12 public school system.


In order to capture experiences that will occur as students resume school in various formats this month, we have extended the window to complete this survey until September 30, 2020. Results will then be compiled and shared with families and school stakeholders (school boards and the provincial government) to help inform and improve partnership with families in the 2020/2021 school year.


In appreciation of your time, you will be entered into a draw to win one of thirty $15 Amazon.ca gift certificates.


Click on this link to learn more and participate.  https://gmucehd.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_6PhSPzCtXdiCeFL


For more information about the survey, contact Heather Aldersey: hma@queensu.ca


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Supporting Our Children’s Mental Health as they Return to School - webinar recording

Returning to school in the fall is an anxious time for both parents and students. These feelings are only magnified when your child suffers from mental health challenges. The “Supporting our Children’s Mental Health as they Return to School” webinar offers tools and tips on supporting your children as they return to school.


Parenting author and mental health advocate, Ann Douglas, was the keynote speaker for the discussion, followed by a panel of educators and parents, including: Holly Sabara, Chair of Parents for Children’s Mental Health and CMHA WW Family Council; Kellie Angerilli, St John Bosco Catholic Secondary School Principal; and Jennifer Meeker, Upper Grand District School Board Principal.

View the recording online here.

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Back to School Mental Health Kit

As students, parents and educators begin to navigate their way back to school after a six month “break”, Canada Mental Health Ontario has recently launched a newly developed resource that supports school re-entry. Click here to access the resources.

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Children & Youth Planning Table data release.

Check out this timely child and youth well-being data released by the Children and Youth Planning Table Youth Impact Survey – Data Briefs surrounding mental and emotional health and belonging are now available.

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Blog Contributor Portrait
Leah Bowman
November 24, 2020
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Blog Contributor Portrait
Waterloo Region Family Network
November 12, 2019
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