On May 14, 2013, youth and their supporters across the province will celebrate Children and Youth in Care Day.
Spearheaded by the Office of the Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth, the day is a response to a recommendation from the Youth Leaving Care Hearings report, "My REAL Life Book", to declare a province-wide Children and Youth in Care Day to raise awareness, reduce stigma and recognize children and youth in the care of the province. It was felt that holding such a day would also help to keep the issues affecting the lives of children and youth in care in the public spotlight.
The date of May 14th was chosen due to the fact that on May 14th, 2012, the then Minister of Children and Youth Services, Eric Hoskins, accepted the "My REAL Life Book" report on behalf of the government of Ontario and made a commitment to work towards fundamental change.
Bill 90, An Act to proclaim Children and Youth in Care Day made it to a second reading prior to the provincial government prorogation in late 2012. Even though the Bill was not passed, youth supporters are optimistic that it will be in the future, but are taking steps to recognize the day in the interim.
Our VOICE Our TURN and The Office of the Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth will be kicking off the first ever Children and Youth in Care Day at Queen’s Park with a ribbon cutting ceremony that will be broadcast live on YouTube, Twitter and Facebook.
Highland Shores Children’s Aid will be holding the Reach for Success Awards celebration at the Empire Theatre in Belleville on May 14th where over 125 children and youth will be recognized for their accomplishments.