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With 13 children in makeshift placements, local Children’s Aid issues call for foster parents


According to the executive director of the Children's Aid Society (CAS), there are thirteen children and youth in our community that are in unlicensed placements like hotels and rented homes.

“Right now, we're in a major crisis,” said Derrick Drouillard, who pointed out there's even one child that is staying in the CAS building on Riverside Drive, out of necessity. “That means my staff are staffing them 24/7 in each location, to try to ensure that they're getting the best care possible.”

The need for foster parents is tremendous and the CAS is asking the community for help.

“We do need the community to support us and help and step up. The crisis has been [province] wide but amongst us for at least the last two years.”

Fostering could mean helping drive someone to an activity, being a friend or mentor, or taking them into your home on a temporary basis.

“Volunteer drive, our homework program, supporting the youth in any way they can. We need community partners and community members as well as agencies and organizations.” Drouillard said.

There are supports in place to help you become a foster parent and the CAS is getting help from community partners like New Beginnings to facilitate the process.

“Our clinical staff have now partnered with CAS and we're helping to train new foster parents so that they can help manage behaviors, look for high risk behaviors, that sort of thing so we're definitely here and willing to help however we can,” said New Beginnings Executive Director Stacey Yannacopoulos.

The children and youth being helped by the CAS have complex needs and Drouillard said the city is lacking robust residential and activity programming to support them.

Drouillard would like to create a hub that includes residence and activities that cater specifically to children with complex needs.

“More investments into community mental health and complex needs areas and especially in the residential area is needed to get us through this crisis,” Drouillard said.

Windsor-Tecumseh MP Andrew Dowie said he would entertain the idea. “If there's a great idea, a great business plan and collaboration and all the different partners that seems to be a winning model I'd love look at it and meet with them first hand.”

If you would be interested in helping out by being a foster parent you can email the CAS at the following address: or call 519-252-1171. Top Stories

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