President’s Report October 2018
I wish to recognise and acknowledge the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations on whose traditional territories we live, we learn and we do our work. I would also like to acknowledge and extend my appreciation to the South Vancouver Island School Based Youth and Family Counsellor’s Association executive: Past President: Sue MacTavish; Vice President: Mark Sheremeta; Treasurer: Deanna Skinner; Secretary: Barb Acheson; District Liaison: Lisa Roy; as well as the Members at Large: Anne Field, Al Reid, Emily Stark, Leila Durzi, Shawna Breitreutz, and Ingrid Bach for their involvement during this past year.
This is my fourth year as President of the SVIYFCA.
On July 17, 1991, the SVIYFCA was registered as a society. This is our 27th year of the SVIYFCA. The constitution signed that year states that the purpose of our society is as follows:
1) To provide a professional Association for school-based Youth & Family Counsellors.
2) To ensure ongoing professional development.
3) To provide professional support to members.
4) To maintain a uniform and professional service.
5) To lobby on behalf of the membership for improved benefits and working conditions.
As an Association we continue to meet these objectives in the following ways:
• SVIYFCA held one AGM & two regular meetings for members this year.
• SVIYFCA held a winter celebration in December and a year-end celebration in June.
• SVIYFCA has an Executive Team, Members at large and regular members. Last year SVIYFCA had 32 members during October 2017 – October 2018.
• SVIYFCA maintains a website to provide information to the public about our Association.
• SVIYFCA provides its members with the use of our professional forms, tools and resources.
• SVIYFCA uses a Peer Support Model.
• SVIYFCA members provide good representation in attending professional workshops/events. Providing our members with current information, practices and trends that members bring back to the membership.
• SVIYFCA is a recognised professional entity in the community and often receives requests from community members/agencies to speak at our meetings with our members.
• SVIYFCA has a professional development committee that provides its members with opportunity for additional learning, growth and discussion. SVIYFCA brought in Cheryl Bell-Gadsby to present to our Association (members & non-members) on the topic of Trauma Informed Practice. This was a well-received presentation. We are hoping to collaborate with the District Counsellor to provide another session on Trauma Informed Practice part 2 this school year.
Any opportunity to meet, whether it is at an Association meeting, Pro-d day event or during an informal celebration this provides our members with an opportunity to connect, converse, share resources, collaborate, raise concerns, advocate for change, participate in activism, provide and receive support from fellow members in this field.
We have a team of incredible, diverse, experienced and knowledgeable professionals doing their best to provide what is best practice in our field. I value and appreciate our members involved in shaping this field and practice. In moving forward as an Association, we will continue to have a strong voice for our profession, and for the children, youth & families we serve in our community.
With encouragement, I (we) continue to ask our members to become a part of the SVIYFCA Executive, participate in committees, commit to attending meetings and attend Pro D events. This Association will continue to be as strong as its members. Please get involved. We also welcome and extend an invitation to school based YFC’s in other districts/programs to join the Association providing our group with a broader perspective/representation for this professional community. We invite new ideas, energy, involvement, change and continued professional development.
Our Association will continue to advocate for increases in wage and benefits that reflect the value of our work, our collective education, experience and wages that are comparable to similar professions in BC.
“One person can make a difference, and everyone should try”.
John Fitzgerald Kennedy