Children and youth planning table Coordinators/Planners need to network too!
The four southeastern Ontario planning table Coordinators/Planners met in Kingston on June 24th to share activities, ideas and learnings, and identify opportunities for collaboration. These regional meetings have been held on a regular basis since 2011.
Jane Torrance, Judith Moses, Marg Fancy and yours truly were joined this time by Morgane Navarot from the Regional French Language Network. Morgane is looking to secure representation from all four planning tables to serve as liaisons with her Network in order to work together at improving access to French language services across the region.
Jane, Judith, Marg and I have worked behind the scenes on a number of regional initiatives.
From January to March 2013, we organized the inter-agency, inter-ministerial Open Minds, Heathy Minds: Children and Youth Mental Health and Addictions Forum, which featured a panel from the Ministries of Children and Youth, Health, Education, Training, Colleges and Universities and the Centre for Addictions and Mental Health (CAMH), and was attended by almost 90 representatives from 60 organizations across southeastern Ontario.
From September 2013 to March 2014, we led the Regional Family Engagement Project, with support from Synergy Consultant Theresa Dostaler, on behalf of and in consultation with the four planning tables. This project was made possible through a successful MCYS Innovation Fund application. Through this action research project, we learned about our similarities and our differences and the opportunities and challeges that exist when working together as a region. Having arrived at common ideas and understanding of family engagement, each planning table is now working on a community-specific plan.
All Coordinator/Planners agree that building positive relationships within and between planning tables favourably affects the quality of planning and ultimately benefits the children, youth and families living in our communities.