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Help support our Children First Fund

Meeting Needs, Creating Opportunities, and Transforming Lives … Thanks to You

What is the Children First Fund?

The children, youth, and families that we work with are some of the strongest, and most resilient people we know, and we want to give them the best opportunities to succeed.

When children, youth, and families experience challenges that can’t be addressed with existing supports, our Children First Fund steps in to fill these critical funding gaps.

Your gifts to our Children First Fund enable us to provide the children, youth, and families we serve with enrichment opportunities, cultural experiences, educational support, life skills, essential needs, and community resources to build strong and resilient families.

Our work is governed by two fundamental beliefs:

  1. We recognize the value of providing early help to isolated and struggling families before intrusive intervention is required.
  2. We know from experience that by providing children and youth involved in the child welfare system with opportunities for growth, they can achieve a better future for themselves.

Who does the Children First Fund Support?

Our Children First Fund empowers vulnerable children, youth and families involved with Family and Children’s Services of Guelph and Wellington County. The families we work with may be facing challenges such as poverty, unemployment, ill health, domestic violence, mental health issues, or caring for a child who has serious physical, emotional or developmental difficulties. 

What Supports Does our Children First Fund Provide?

The Children First Fund supports children, youth, and families by:

  1. Filling local gaps in support by helping vulnerable families to meet their basic needs when no other resources are available in the community.
  2. Enhancing access to unique and important programs for youth that support needs like driver’s training, education, job development, health and well-being, identity and culture, relationships and professional supports, and other life skills and necessities.
  3. Providing life-changing opportunities to support children and families with recreational, leisure, and cultural experiences to support positive relationships, identify and culture, health and well-being, and strong permanent connections to family.

We provide support to children, youth, and families through three main pillars:

To learn more about our pillars, and our impact, please click here.

Here are our four pillars: Building Opportunities for Youth Success (which empowers youth leaving care with the resources and opportunities they need to succeed); Supporting Strong & Resilient Families (which Empowers families with the resources and opportunities they need to be strong and resilient); Meeting Urgent Needs (which ensures that children, youth and families recieving services from us can meet their basic needs when they can't find or access support elsewhere); and enriching lives (which provides enrichment opportunities that improve the health and well-being of our children, youth and families)

Why is the Children First Fund Important?

It fills local gaps in support that exist for the children, youth, and families we serve

We want to provide the children, youth, and families that we serve with everything they need to succeed. Sometimes the resources that we need to do this work fall outside of the government funding that we receive.

The Children First Fund ensures that our children, youth, and families have somewhere to turn when they can’t find the help they need elsewhere.

It provides the unique support that children, youth and families need

The children, youth and families that we work with often struggle with a variety of complex barriers and challenges. Utilizing an extremely individualized approach, our Children First Fund allows us to go beyond our mandate to provide unique supports, resources and opportunities that our children, youth and families need to achieve their best outcomes.

The Children First Fund would not exist without you!

Our Children First Fund is available to the children, youth, and families we serve due to the kindness of our donors and community champions! In fact, the work of our Children First Fund is entirely dependent on the generosity of our supporters – if it weren’t for you, our Children First Fund wouldn’t exist!

Thanks to your incredible gifts, we can continue to build enrichment opportunities, meet needs, create cultural experiences, and transform the lives of the children, youth and families that we serve.

We know that our Children First Fund makes an incredible difference. Thanks to you, the Children First Fund raised over $206,800 in financial and $10,000 of in-kind support in 2022-2023.

“Alone we can do so little, but together we can do so much.” – Helen Keller

If you have questions about our Children First Fund or want to know how you can support our work, please contact Kristen Granger, Fund Development & Communications Manager, via 519-400-7342 or email

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