Through Shalem’s affiliation with Wrap Canada, Shalem has been at the forefront of recent exciting national developments in WrapAround. Our WrapAround Development Director, Andrew Debicki, has been the lead developer of a made-in-Canada High Fidelity WrapAround model launched in 2013.
The model emphasizes community-based responses to people who have significant, overlapping and mutually reinforcing challenges, such as mental illness, poverty and other special needs. Included in the model is a state-of-the-art evaluation regime, based on resilience measures from Dalhousie’s Resilience Research Centre and the social determinants of health, developed through funding provided to Shalem by the Ontario Centre of Excellence for Child and Youth Mental Health.
We are thrilled with the reception of this work across Canada. Andrew Debicki spent several weeks both last summer and in the fall in Saskatchewan training and assisting Saskatchewan’s Ministry of Social Services to implement a project using the new Canadian High Fidelity WrapAround model to support youth in the care of the government to transition back to their community. The training and assistance will continue into 2014.
Andrew began work with two new Youth Gang Prevention projects, each funded for 5 years by Public Safety Canada’s National Crime Prevention Centre. In Manitoba, Andrew has provided training and assistance for West Region Child and Family Services that provides child welfare for First Nations children, youth and families across Manitoba. As part of this work he participated in and supported a week-long training session by The Native American Training Institute. The focus of this session was to train the project staff in a Native American WrapAround model that blends WrapAround with traditional cultural practices. Andrew then worked with the project team at West Region Child and Family Services to blend the Native American WrapAround model with the new Canadian High Fidelity WrapAround model.
Andrew also began training with a project team working out of the Winnipeg Health Sciences Hospital on a pilot project called The Emergency Department Violence Intervention Program. The focus of this two-year pilot project is to implement the new Canadian High Fidelity WrapAround project with youth who arrive in the emergency as a result of injuries sustained through violence. This project is funded by the Canadian Institute of Health Research. Further training with both of these projects in Manitoba will follow in 2014.
The other Youth Gang Prevention Project that Andrew began work with is being launched by La Maison des Jeunes par la Grand’Porte in a neighbourhood of Montreal. Andrew is mentoring Wrap Canada’s French-language trainer, Gisele Forrest, who gave a one-day WrapAround orientation in French to both staff from the project and their community partners. Further training in Montreal will follow.
Finally, Andrew began training with staff from a new project called The Caroline Families First Program. This project is the result of a partnership between the Reach Out Centre for Kids (ROCK) and Caroline Family Health Team in Burlington. It is jointly funded by the Ministry of Child and Youth Services and the Ministry of Health and Long Term care. This project will work with families with children and youth with challenging mental health needs. Training and Coaching of the staff will continue in 2014.
The new Canadian WrapAround model also fully undergirds Shalem’s own WrapAround program, led by our Director of WrapAround Services, Elske de Visch Eybergen, and by Andrew Hawkins of the Chatham-Kent Neighbourlink WrapAround Relational Ministries program. We are most grateful for funding for this work from World Vision Canada’s Partners to End Child Poverty program.
These are exciting times for WrapAround in Canada, and Shalem is pleased, with partners across Canada, to help lead the way!