By Paula Wells, CAS/VAW Advisory Committee Coordinator
This summer, the CAS/VAW Advisory Committee in the Toronto Region, launched the CAS/VAW E-Learning Centre for workers in child protection (CAS) and violence against women (VAW) agencies. This E-Learning Centre provides an accessible on-line forum to increase learning, collaboration, and networking between workers in both sectors.
Through training, staff learn to better understand the work of each sector and enhance cooperation. The goal of the E-Learning Centre is to increase safety and provide outstanding service delivery to the women and children of Toronto who are experiencing violence.
The E-Learning Centre currently has three available modules:
Understanding the Collaboration Agreement
Designed for workers in violence against women and child protection agencies, this e-learning provides information and exercises on the CAS/VAW Collaboration Agreement for Toronto. The goal of the e-learning, like that of the Collaboration Agreement, is to increase safety for women and children by enhancing co-operation between workers and improving service delivery.
Children’s Safety & Woman Abuse: An E-Learning for Child Welfare Worker
This e-learning for child welfare workers looks at the impact of woman abuse on children and how to respond to families in which woman abuse is occurring. Topics include woman abuse, the impact on children, parenting issues, working with the mother and with the abuser.
Working with Child Welfare: An E-learning for VAW Workers
This e-learning for VAW workers sets out when a worker must contact child welfare about a child who may be in need of protection, how to make your report in a manner that helps to hold the abusive partner accountable, and how to a support a woman who is involved with child welfare.
Access to these training modules is limited to workers of agencies who have signed the CAS/VAW Collaboration Agreement for Toronto. Check the list of participating agencies here to see if you are eligible for training.
If you are eligible and wish to enroll in the E-Learning Centre, a $25.00 fee will give you access to all three training modules and any new curriculum that may be added. Don’t miss out on your chance….. click here for more information on how to enroll! If you have any questions regarding the E-Learning Centre, feel free to contact Paula Wells by email
Recently, staff at the Catholic Children’s Aid Society of Toronto (CCAS) participated in in-person training facilitated by the Child Development Institute (CDI). This training titled, Children Exposed to Domestic Violence: Strategies for Assessment and Intervention in CAS and VAW Practice, consisted of learning about how trauma and domestic violence impact parenting and child development, as well as the importance of collaboration between child welfare and violence against women sectors.
Topics discussed during the training included:
Training granted participants with the awareness and knowledge of many different aspects:
Preeta George, Transitional and Housing Support Coordinator of Dr. Roz’s Healing Place, shared her thoughts on the CDI training: "It was informative, interactive, and fun. We had the opportunity to share the VAW perspective with the CCAS workers and vice versa. The facilitator was well prepared and carried the session forward involving everyone to the end!"
Gemma Gilkes, Team Leader, also shed light on her experience: "I thought the training was very informative and the facilitator was very knowledgeable and engaging with the attendees. I enjoyed that the session was so interactive because it generated a lot of dialogue from the participants. In turn, valuable information was obtained and exchanged among participants that can be applied in our daily work. I look forward to continued training!"
Lisa Sura-Lidell, facilitator of the CDI training session, “really enjoyed working with the staff from both sectors and sharing knowledge to better serve families”.
Once CDI’s training was completed, all participants were asked to complete the three CAS/VAW E-Learning Centre modules. There is a huge percentage of intake, investigation and ongoing child protection staff that have received this training and are now keeping the knowledge alive by continuing to have the conversations.
Visit the CAS/VAW Collaboration website for more information on the E-Learning Centre!