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Family & Community Support Services success stories

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Family & Community Support Services (FCSS) makes a difference in the lives of Calgarians. We are proud to share some of our success stories with you. If you would like to share how FCSS has made a positive impact in your organization or clients' lives, please contact us at fcss@calgary.ca.

Note: These stories are published with permission from the people involved. Names have been changed to protect their privacy.

Positive child and youth development

Antyx

Roxanne doesn’t always fit in very well with the other youth, and school has been tough for her because of bullying. She started going to Antyx, but would act up there because she lacked confidence in herself. At Antyx, Roxanne was able to make new friends, and she started expressing herself through art and writing. Roxanne now fits in better at school, goes to class regularly, and displays her art in public. Her mother has seen a big difference in her daughter, thanks to Antyx.

Family cohesion and positive parenting

Métis Calgary Family Services

Susan, a first time mother, and her mom came to Native Network wanting to learn positive parenting to strengthen their bond as a family. Both had experienced removal from cultural teachings and traditional ways of parenting, and were disconnected from natural supports. They completed Group Triple P Positive Parenting (PPP) together during the pregnancy, and then joined the Traditional Parenting with the Elders workshops. Mom and Kokum (Grandma) learned traditional parenting and hands on cradle board teachings, under the guidance of a traditional Elder. Both mom and Kokum now have the tools to support each other, while building up a strong cultural identity for themselves and the next generation.

Adult personal capacity / economic self-sufficiency

Momentum

Trevor and Mary arrived in Calgary from Afghanistan in May of 2012 in hopes of bettering their lives. The family enrolled in Language Instruction for Newcomers Classes (LINC), while Mary and Trevor balanced full-time retail jobs. They experienced language difficulties, unsafe housing conditions, employment barriers and legal issues, as well as discrimination and isolation. Trevor knew he needed to make a dramatic shift from a job to a career as a plumber, which would provide sustainable income to support a growing family. Trevor joined a pre-apprenticeship training program and the Savings Circles program at Momentum. He was eager to learn ways to be successful in Canada and he regularly took on the personal challenge of sharing his life experience with other group members. After successfully completing this six-month savings program he earned the maximum amount available to him. With his determination, positive attitude and his new plumbing tools bought with money saved through the Savings Circles program, he is on his path to becoming a journeyman plumber. Matched-savings programs such as Savings Circles partner with participants to help them build productive futures through asset building.

Positive social ties

Distress Centre

After an argument with her adult son who has mental health and addiction issues, a mother called the crisis line at the Distress Centre. The son also spoke to the Distress Centre on this call and explained that he was not suicidal, but angry and wanted the money back that he had paid mother for rent. The son also explained that he has other support systems and a counsellor and did not need emergency intervention. The volunteer at the Distress Centre listened to both the mother and son on the call, ensured they were both safe, then transferred the call to 211 so the callers could access more resources. By listening and validating their concerns, a potentially volatile situation was resolved safely and peacefully.

Community development

The Alexandra Community Health Centre

Kyler, 17, heard about The Alex Community Food Centre last summer, when he went to the Food Centre for a meal with his single father and six siblings. Kyler was impressed. He’s met some great people who have helped him find a niche for himself in the community. And he says seeing people so kind and generous has given him hope for the future.​​​

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