Home » Profile

Agency Profile

Wahkotowin Child and Family Services Inc. began delivering child welfare services in September 2005. Wahkotowin CF provides services to children and family members of James Smith, Peter Chapman and Chakastaypaysin First Nations. James Smith is unique within their political structure as this community has three Chiefs and has memberships within the three bands living within that community.

A Board of Directors guides the governance structure for the agency. There are three Board of Director members that represent each respective First Nation. As well, there is an Elder that sits with the Board of Directors. An Elders Advisory Committee represents the three First Nations. As well, the agency tries to meet with all the Elders on a quarterly basis.

The agency has completed a three-year evaluation and a sixth year evaluation. The ninth year evaluation has just been completed. So from the recent evaluation, some of the recommendations that came forth will be incorporated in the business plan. The agency has had two file reviews and continues to implement the recommendations that were presented.

The agency has hosted numerous Elders gathering, and the agency strives in maintaining a close relationship for their support and knowledge. The agency believes that the children from the community have a right to live a healthy holistic lifestyle that is grounded with their culture and traditions. Guided by our Elders, we will continue to work to ensure that the best interests of all children are paramount and recognized and protected. From the Elders teachings, we live with the knowledge that "OUR CHILDREN ARE GIFTS FROM THE CREATOR" and we must stand together to ensure they are raised in a safe and nurturing environment. It is the agencies understanding that it takes a community to raise a child, thus, parents, guardians and the community must be involved.

Protection services are provided to families with limited funding, hence we cannot put all the resources needed to make it work properly. The prevention dollars will help us achieve this goal. With the prevention formula, the agency is looking forward to assisting children and families with supports/resources so that the children do not come into care. Some of the resources we hope to provide include:
- Continue using the Elders as an instrument in keeping the agency moving in the right direction for the community, as well utilizing the Elders knowledge, i.e.: parents at "agency home".
- Providing different types of workshops that focus on holistic healing.
- Providing culturally appropriate programs/services to the community members.
- Promoting a good working relationship with the different agency within the community.

Over the years the agency has encountered many challenges, one of them was the awareness of Child and Family Service. To bring positive awareness to the program, we have had many open houses, however there was limited attendance. The agency does have an Elder Advisory Committee that acts in an advisory capacity, and has been very instrumental in the Elders Gathering the agency has facilitated. The Elders Gathering have been very effective in getting the message out, as they have developed a booklet on "Traditional Parenting" as well, are still in a lengthy process of completing a family tree for the community. The guidance from the Elders plays a key role in on-going development of the agency, as they make recommendations to the agency regarding the needs of the community.

The Wahkotowin Child and Family Services Inc. Board of Directors recognize we cannot succeed alone. Rather we must continue to work cooperatively and in true partnership with the members and Elders to influence the outcome and results of improving the quality of life for our gifts – our children.