Piloting a CYSN service approach in four communities

Last updated on March 27, 2023

A new pilot CYSN service approach in four communities 

The Province is piloting a new service approach for children and youth with support needs and their families in four communities starting in 2023. These communities are Kelowna, Prince Rupert, Terrace and Smithers 

The Province has paused the rollout of a plan to establish a provincial network of family connection centres, with the exception of four pilots. The service approach that is being piloted will be evaluated and this time will be used to allow for deeper engagement with all partners to build a better system of services for all children and youth with support that needs that is co-developed with Indigenous communities. Shape 

What is available to families in the four communities? 

Pilot family connections centres (FCCs) are operated by contracted community organizations in four centres in the Central Okanagan and the North Coast / Bulkley Nechako. FCCs deliver a range of voluntary services, delivered by multidisciplinary teams including speech therapists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists  and behavioural analysts and consultants that can be accessed by children, youth and families without the involvement of the Ministry of Children and Family Development or ministry staff. 

Disability Services includes respite and parenting and professional supports. Disability Services are delivered through the Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) and will be available in the four pilot communities for eligible children and youth with support needs and their families.  

Provincial Services include:  

  • Information Services  
  • Individualized Autism Funding Programs 
  • At Home Program Medical Benefits: Equipment and Medical supplies for children and youth with support needs Shape 

How will the pilot family connections centre support my family? 

There are a number of ways families will be able to access support in the four communities. In these areas, pilot family connections centres run by local community organizations will offer virtual, in-home, outreach and centre-based services to meet the different and unique needs of families. 

If a family accessing autism services through a pilot family connections centre decides it is not the right fit for their child/youth and family, they can resume their Individualized Autism Funding at any time. Individualized funding can be paused only once.    

Next steps 

The Province has committed to engaging in deeper consultation with children and youth with support needs, parents and caregivers, First Nations, Indigenous peoples, communities, experts and practitioners, and others with lived experience to understand how the system of supports for children and youth with support needs can be transformed and together build a better system of supports, co-developed with Indigenous communities. The four pilots will be evaluated during this process. 

Visit the ministry’s CYSN Engagement Updates page for more information on this subject. 

Read the Children and Youth with Support Needs Service Framework and service descriptions for the pilots  

  1. Service framework - Revised May 12, 2022 
  2. Family connections centres - Revised April 28, 2022 
  3. Disability services 
  4. Provincial services 
  5. Appendices, glossary and bibliography