This Child and Youth Care program has earned national accreditation from the Child and Youth Care Educational Accreditation Board of Canada, becoming the first of its kind in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area and the third in Canada to do so.
George Brown College's Child and Youth Care program combines best practice principles and a relational approach that is anchored in the values of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Ontario Association of Child and Youth Care Code of Ethics.
Students learn to engage purposefully and effectively with children, adolescents, and families who struggle with emotional, behavioral, and developmental challenges that impair their abilities to relate to others.
The specific focus is on recognizing the impact of mental health challenges on children and youth.
Students learn to translate theory into practice to move youth from potential risk to resilience. In preparation for the field or clinical placement, students will be required to work in multiple small and large groups within classes and community settings.
There is also an Advanced Diploma in Child and Youth Care (Accelerated) option available, to which one can apply if they have already completed a two- or three-year diploma, or a three- or four-year degree. This program starts in May and is delivered over 12 consecutive months (three consecutive semesters).
Scope of practice includes:
assessing risk and developmental needs of vulnerable children and families
designing and implementing therapeutic intervention
crisis intervention and safety planning with children, youth, and their families
developing therapeutic relationships within challenging contexts
applying group and systems theories in physical and social settings
fostering resilience and applying a strength-based approach to assessment and intervention
Your Field Education Options
Field placement plays an important role in the Child and Youth Care program.
The first year provides students with an opportunity to develop a solid foundation of skills to build upon. The subsequent academic courses come to life in a wide range of supervised field placements in the second and third years of the program.
Second-year students can expect to be in placement two days a week (Winter semester) and third-year students can expect to be in placement three days a week over 28 weeks (includes both the Fall and Winter Semester).
Placements may take place in professional settings such as:
community outreach programs
Students are expected to work both day and evening shifts (not overnight) and may be requested to work on some weekends.
For the Accelerated option, students gain valuable hands-on experience through two supervised field placement opportunities. The first placement occurs over seven consecutive weeks in the Summer semester and the second occurs over four consecutive months in the Winter semester. Each placement is four days/week.
Field placement opportunities take place in agencies and institutions that offer services to the community within the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). The CYC program also offers international placement experiences when possible.