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CHILD & YOUTH FRIENDLY Social & Family Support Services

These indicators have been compiled with a grading system to help you and your community think through aspects of child and youth friendliness in each domain. 


A grading system allows you to recognize that (for most of these indicators) there are many steps between 'not at all child and youth friendly' and 'extremely child and youth friendly'. Your community may fall somewhere in the middle on many of the indicators. 


For each indicator, try to grade your community out of 10.

1 being "Not at all child and youth friendly",

5 being "some positive aspects but some changes could be made" and

10 being "We are a leader in child and youth friendly practices".


This is designed to be printed and done communally. 




services are available and equally accessible for all children and youth regardless of special needs, sexual orientation, culture, religion, etc.    

services address young people’s needs holistically, including physical, psychological, social and spiritual needs


services respect the unique nature of aboriginal people’s experiences and cultures


information about services is easily accessible in print, through toll-free telephone lines, and online in a variety of languages


a comprehensive and cohesive interagency approach is utilized in service
community-based services are readily available when children, youth, and families need them (e.g., no major waiting lists)


social networking sites have posts that increase awareness in youth about different social service related sites


staff and volunteers are carefully selected and receive criminal record checks


training is offered for staff and volunteers in child rights


training is offered for staff and volunteers on abuse/neglect issues


training is offered for staff and volunteers in first aid

staff and volunteers have the skills to communicate effectively with children, youth, and their families, and treat them with respect


staff and volunteers inform young people about their rights


services are culturally sensitive


offices are child and youth friendly in appearance, design, and accessibility


family-centred, temporary care services for children in times of crisis are accessible


private meeting spaces are provided to protect privacy and dignity of children, youth and families


offices clearly display information about complaints processes and advocacy services


informal, welcoming spaces are available where parents of young children can meet each other and receive and share information about child-rearing


support services are affordable and inclusive of all families, especially those who may face barriers


parent-child programs are inclusive of all the different types and compositions of families


parent-child programs promote multi-generational activities

there are parent-child programs that support the healthy development of children such as Strong Start


parent support groups are available and inclusive to different types and compositions of families (e.g., groups for dads, teen parents, grandparents raising grandchildren, newcomers, single parents, LGBTQQ parents, nannies)

parent skills training is offered and is easily accessible (e.g., literacy programs, parents in crisis, My Tween and Me, Nobody’s Perfect)


information is provided to parents and service providers on preventing, recognizing and reporting child abuse/neglect and child rights


information about recent findings from child development research and new updates on community programs are available and distributed widely in programs and services for parents


prevention programs and early intervention programs are offered to the community


access to early diagnosis for children with special needs


access to a range of services that address special needs of children and their families such as infant development consultants, physiotherapists, occupational, and language therapists


programs are available that support nursing mothers


programs are available that support healthy pregnancy choices


programs are available that allow teen parents to complete their education

programs that support parents to keep their children in their own care, especially for parents living in poverty


foster placements are arranged within the community and with the input of affected children/youth


information about services is widely distributed in print and online in a variety of languages


counseling services are offered at little to no cost


home visiting programs are offered before and after the birth of a child


home visiting programs are offered that continue throughout early childhood when necessary


safe or transition houses and shelters for victims of relationship violence are available that accommodate the victim’s children and are inaccessible to potential/accused abusers


1- UNFRIENDLY             5- OK                     10-A LEADER




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