Alberta’s Child and Youth Advocate thinks it’s time our province stops treating foster parents and kinship care providers the same.
“There’s less training provided to kinship caregivers, there is no specific support structure for kinship caregivers like there is a foster parent association,” Del Graff told 630 CHED’s Ryan Jespersen.
Kinship care is actually much more complex, according to Graff, due to the pre-existing relationship between the child’s parents and the care provider, and the fact that the care provider may not be familiar with the trauma the child went through.
“We as a society have to say if we want children to be placed with their kin, and that could be grandparents, aunties, uncles etc., then we need to be able to support them to do that effectively and safely,” he said.
Graff’s comments came only days after shocking details were brought to light about the life and death of a young girl named Serenity in an Edmonton Journal investigation.
The girl, who Graff must refer to as Marie under privacy laws, died after being taken from her mother and placed in the care of her grandparents. (kb)