Celebrating Children and Youth in Care Day

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A message from Paul Rosebush, CEO of Children’s Aid Society of Toronto

Today, May 14, 2020, marks ‘Children and Youth in Care Day’ in Ontario. First proclaimed into law in 2012, this day serves as an opportunity to raise awareness within and beyond the child welfare sector about the positive contributions current and former youth in care make to our community. Across our city and province, it’s a chance to unite together to honour the challenges of their pasts and to ensure the success of their futures.

We know that the journeys of the young people we serve have not been easy. However, when faced with adversity, it is their strength and bravery that has allowed them to move forward with great resilience. We’ve seen many of our youth apply their unique lived experiences to become child welfare advocates, influencing policy and legislation, inspiring change, and reducing stigma related to those in care.

At CAS of Toronto, we're here to help children and youth in and from care achieve their goals and dreams by making decisions with them - not for them. We’re committed to working by their side to unlock their full potential by providing housing, education, employment, financial literacy, health and counselling resources. Through partnerships with fellow social service organizations, community agencies and government bodies, we're focused on establishing support and social networks in hopes that our youth never walk alone.

Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, Children and Youth in Care Day has never been more important. Through isolation, physical distancing as well as compounded financial, housing and mental health challenges, it’s integral that those served by Children’s Aid Societies and Indigenous Child and Family Well-Being Agencies feel a sense of connection and recognition. Now more than ever, we must ensure they feel seen, heard and supported.

While our communities may be navigating unprecedented times, the strength of children and youth in care remains unwavering. Today, and every day, let us come together to celebrate their diversity, strengths and successes.