Foster Family Association (FFA)
The Foster Family Association (FFA) of Family and Children’s Services of Guelph and Wellington County consists of all Foster Families approved by the Agency.Â Foster Families automatically become members of the FFA when they are approved following completion of their homestudy.Â Active participation in the FFA is encouraged.Â Foster Parents may choose to become involved on the FFA executive or any of its committees, all working toward maintaining a strong voice and network for Foster Families.
The FFA strives for the best interests of children and promotes the improvement and development of services to foster children.Â It also promotes fellowship and a spirit of mutual cooperation and helpfulness among its members.
The FFA also establishes, maintains and promotes among all members of the association and staff, programs designed to develop fostering skills.Â The association tries to maintain a close working relationship with the agency, its staff, and Board of Directors.Â The FFA appoints a member as its representative to the Board of Directors.Â The FFA also maintains a Foster Family Association Advocacy Support Program.
Contact your Families to Permanence Worker for the names of the current FFA executive members, or Advocacy Support program members.Â
Role of the Foster Families Association (FFA) Advocacy Support Program
The Foster Families Association (FFA) selects from its members individuals or couples to act in the role of a FFA Advocacy Support Team member, hereafter referred to as Advocate.Â The Executive of the Foster Families Association determines the term of the appointment.
Upon request, the Advocate acts to support and assist Foster Parents who:
a)Â Â Â are under investigation by Family & Children’s Services in response to an allegation of child abuse or a circumstance such as a service complaint that warrants a child protection investigation; or
b)Â Â require support or assistance to resolve a conflict they are experiencing with the Agency
- Foster Parents are to be informed of the availability of the FFA Advocacy Support Program at the point that they are approved by the Agency.
- Foster Parents will be reminded of the existence of the FFA Advocacy Support Program at the onset of any abuse or service complaint investigation.Â They will also be provided with current contact information for the Programâs coordinator, at that time.
- Foster Parents may directly approach the Coordinator of the FFA Advocacy Support Program or any individual Advocate at their discretion.
- Advocates will conduct themselves on the basis of absolute and strict confidentiality, with the exception of information that must be divulged as required by law.Â The Agency will assist the FFA in the orientation and training of all Advocates in relevant Statutes, Ministry Standards and Policy, Agency Policy, Procedures, Practices, and interpersonal skills.
- The Advocate may accompany Foster Parents to Agency interviews, hearings and conferences arising from investigations, and take part in these discussions, if their attendance and participation have been requested by the Foster Parents involved.
- A Foster Parent under investigation has the right to disclose to the Advocate any and all information regarding the matter under investigation or the conflict requiring resolution.
- The Families to Permanence Worker assigned to the Foster Family using the Advocate, will also liaise with the Advocate.
- The role and responsibilities of Program will be reviewed yearly by a committee consisting of members of the FFA Executive, the Childrenâs Services Director and the Families to Permanence Supervisor and at any other time on request of the Agency or FFA Executive.
Â FFA Executive includes:
- President- Joy Cole
- 1st VP – Jane Wood
- 2nd VP- Joan Smith
- Secretary – Dianne Schieck
- Treasurer – Susan Mellor