Catholic Parent Involvement Committee – CPIC Parent Hub

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Keynote Welcome by Kristin Souers

Kristin Souers co-authored (with Pete Hall) the award-winning publications Fostering Resilient Learners: Strategies for Creating a Trauma-Sensitive Classroom and Relationship, Responsibility, and Regulation: Trauma-Invested Practices for Fostering Resilient Learners. She and Pete shared their expertise in creating Trauma Sensitive Classrooms with our WCDSB educators at our 2021 Mental Health PD day. Kristin returns to introduce CPIC’s Parent Hub and offers her insight into the questions you pose, such as…

  • Why is my child struggling with anxiety now, more than ever?
  • How do I help my child build their social skills after a huge gap in interaction?
  • My child is identifying as LGBTQS+, how do I support them?

Kristin Souers is a licensed mental health counselor who has worked in early learning, law enforcement, education, and mental health. She has expertise in complex trauma, the impact of violence, crisis management, counseling, and trauma-informed care. As an independent consultant Kristin now provides critical professional development, consultation, education, and training services to schools, school districts, and organizations throughout North America.



AFRO- Non Profit Organization working with Black and African Families in the KW area. As parents, Caregivers, and Educators, we are all concerned for our children’s social development. At AFRO we offer programs that enhance social interactions and engagement.

The different programs we offer at the Victoria Hills Community Centre helps and supports social development skills such as healthy communication, empathy, and promotes emotional and mental wellness from ages 5 to16 years olds.


Program Details

Ages 5-9 – Every Monday at 3:30-5pm

Ages 13+ – Every Monday at 6-8pm

Ages 9-12- Every Wednesday at 5-6:45

Ages 13+ AFRO Girls youth empowerment program every Friday at  4:30-6pm

Every other Tuesday- Boys youth basketball from 5:30-7pm



For more information please contact us via email or phone and would be happy to support you.

Phone: 519-576-0540 ext. 3731
Visit the Afro Website

Anishnabeg Outreach

Anishnabeg Outreach is an incorporated non-profit organization guided by a volunteer Board of Directors.  We work primarily with the non-profit sector and are guided by a clear mission and set of values. We provide Indigenous people with access to culturally appropriate services and strive to support individuals with direction and assistance to overcome barriers. We encourage individual exploration of avenues that will lead to self-sufficiency and success. Visit Anishnabeg Outreach website to learn more about the organization.



Phone: 519-208-5333
Visit the Anishnabeg Outreach Website

Canadian Centre for Child Protection

The Canadian Centre for Child Protection is a national charity dedicated to the personal safety of all children. Our goal is to reduce the sexual abuse and exploitation of children, assist in the location of missing children, and prevent child victimization through a number of programs, services, and resources for Canadian families, educators, child-serving organizations, law enforcement, and other parties.

Helpful Resources and Links

Trending Resources, Timely Support Understand and Identify Child Sexual Abuse
Keeping Kids Safe Online Safety
Taking Action Support for Survivors and Their Families


Human Trafficking

Safeguarding Children and Youth: Human Trafficking Children for Sexual Exploitation

Description: This training video provides adults with information to build capacity to safeguard youth from trafficking for sexual exploitation. While this video was developed for school staff and community organizations, the information is important and relevant for parents and caregivers. Learn about trafficking in Canada, signs to watch for, what to do if you have concerns, and how to support youth.

Online Risks and Emerging Trends

Safeguarding Children and Youth: Online Risks and Trends

Description: In this video, the Canadian Centre for Child Protection provides insights into concerning trends seen through operations of – Canada’s tipline to report the online sexual exploitation of children, and provides considerations and resources for talking with children and youth about online safety and enhancing supervision.


Unpacking anxiety and social skills in children and youth. Supporting our children and youth with their anxiety and social skills can feel daunting!

Carizon offers a variety of programs and services to support the emotional wellbeing of children, youth and families. You can find information about our services and other resources in the community here:

Carizon Community Services Padlet Counselling Collaborative Waterloo Region
Carizon for the Community Canadian Mental Health Association
Anxiety Canada Front Door
Family Care Centre Family Compass


Laura Portengen

Lauren Portengen is a Family Resource Coordinator Lead and provides support to families as they connect with Carizon programs and other supports in their community. Having worked alongside families for several years, Lauren is passionate about mental-health education and supporting families in feeling connected to their community.

Unpacking Anxiety and Social Skills in Children and Youth Video Summary

This video will unpack common myths about anxiety and provide caregivers with insight into how anxiety is expressed in children and youth. Through recommended strategies and resources, this video will offer suggestions of how best to support our children in developing strong social and emotional regulation skills.



Location: 400 Queen St. S, Kitchener
Phone: 519-743-6333
Visit the Carizon Website

The Gems of Life

Managing Anxiety

Where do we begin when it comes to supporting child/children’s anxiety?  That is a concern for many parents, caregivers and educators. Anxiety can disrupt our lives when it’s not managed early.

 So where do we begin? In this video I invite you to be open to receive some simple steps that would help alleviate anxiety levels to a manageable state. 

It’s important to have awareness and check in with our anxiety levels, how are we managing our anxiety? Do we have a system we can use to manage anxiety? And perhaps the most important question is, what is triggering our anxiety? Check out the video below for steps on how to manage your anxiety!



KW Counselling Services

KW Counselling Services has been proudly supporting our community since 1950.  We are a multi-service agency providing individual, family, group, parenting and outreach supports to the community. We reach out to those in our community who seek to create positive change in their lives. Our  services are informed by the client’s values and goals with an emphasis on growth, development and change. We believe in a client’s right to self-determination and view the counselling relationship through a non-judgmental, strength-based and anti- oppressive lens. We are committed to creating a safe, welcoming, accessible and inclusive environment for all community members.

KW Counselling Services provides excellence in counselling, public education, and training. We engage with our community at the individual, family and systems level, promoting positive changes that lead to fulfilled and productive lives.



Location: 480 Charles St E, Kitchener
Phone: 519-884-0000
Visit the KW Counselling Services Website


OK2BME’s services are provided by the staff and supervised placement students at KW Counselling Services. All of the psychotherapists at KW Counselling Services have Masters level education and experience working with kids, teens, and families on a variety of topics. The placement students at KW Counselling Services come from Master of Social Work or counselling programs.

We offer counselling to 2SLGBTQIA+ youth in Waterloo Region. Those who live in Waterloo Region and face barriers paying for counselling may be eligible for subsidies.


Location: 480 Charles St E, Kitchener
Phone: 519-884-0000
Visit the OK2BME Website


Waterloo Region Suicide Prevention Council Video Summary

When faced with uncertain and difficult situations, it’s not uncommon to feel like we’re struggling with our overall mental and emotional well-being.  Resilience is not something we are born with, it involves “behaviors, thoughts, and actions that can be learned and developed in anyone” (American Psychological Association).  This video focuses on mental health and mental health promotion while providing education and awareness for suicide prevention.  We’ll briefly explore three categories of resiliency and protective factors, talk about how to identify some invitations for help, and end with some helpful resources.


In case of an immediate emergency, call 911

Location: 285 Benjamin Road, Waterloo
Phone: 519-884-0422
Visit the WRSPC Website

School Mental Health Ontario Messages to Parents