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Transcripts of Selected Group Discussions on CYC-Net

Since it's founding in 1997, the CYC-Net discussion group has been asked thousands of questions. These questions often generate many replies from people in all spheres of the Child and Youth Care profession and contain personal experiences, viewpoints, as well as recommended resources.

Below are some of the threads of discussions on varying Child and Youth Care related topics.

Questions and Responses have been reproduced verbatim.

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CYC qualifications


My current agency has received money to hire more workers, and my qualifications as a CYC has been in question. I have completed my CYW from Mohawk College and I am currently completing my Child and Youth Care at Ryerson. Can CYCs register with the college of social workers or do we have our own body that functions as an equivalent. Every posting at my agency seems to indicate Ontario Social work registration. I fear that my employer will not recognize my CYC, which could jeopardize my career options.

Is there any material on CYC's that I can provide my employer to convince and educate them on how competent, professional and well trained we are?

Thank-you kindly;
Ontario, Canada


I am now sitting with a serious concern, why the qualifications for Child and Youth Care seem to be a challenge! Is it a global phenomenon? It is indeed unfortunate, the men and women who do this valuable work seem to experience these challenges and be unrecognised. Perhaps, the very people who should ensure registrations,regulations etc. should move with speed. Perhaps, the Child and Youth Care Workers themselvesshould voice out this challenge to the powers that be, to fast track this process. Perhaps, thelearning institutions should equally take these courses very seriously.

The undeniable fact remains that Child and Youth Care plays an immense role in our communities.

Just concerned!

Nkwapa d Moloto
South Africa


But it's not a college like the social workers' one. It does have info on the cyw/cyc profession. Something else you might want to do is include your transcripts with the individual courses you did/are doing in the cyw program.

All the best.


Hi Jason,

While I worked through my BCYC degree online through UVIC in B.C. I was a "student" member of the Ontario Association of Child & Youth Counsellors I reside in Ontario as well. This association is actively pursuing professionalization of the Child and Youth Care field which I think will enhance recognition of the field even more. I have recently completed my degree so I will transfer over to a "full" membership and I am definitely showing my status as a member of the OACYC on my resume.

It is my opinion as well that although our province is saturated with those who have obtained social work degrees and because of this it is well recognized I believe that those who work closely with children and youth will be aware of yours, and consequently my, Child and Youth Care degree. I am left wondering why this is not the case in your organization. I also do not think your future career options are jeopardized because of your degree choice! In terms of the employer you are currently working for not recognizing the degree you may be forced to educate and inform the individuals but there is no jeopardy in your career! Show them the OACYC site, show them CYC-Net.

Differentiate yourself from social workers (because our work really is different, similar in some areas but different). Good luck and of course I am biased but I think you are headed towards a wonderfully rewarding career...maybe our paths will cross some day.

Fellow Ontario CYCer,
Julie Clarke, BCYC
OACYC Member
Soon-to-be Private Practitioner

From: Jillian Viens []
Sent: 30 September 2011 05:36 PM

Hi Jason,

I recently looked in to this as I am from B.C but considering relocating to Ontario. There is the Ontario Association of Child and Youth Counsellors. They have a wonderfully informative website and you can register with the association as well. The web address is I hope this helps.
Good luck!

Jillian Viens

Gee can't help but scratch my head and ask "who is your employer?"

Susan Mosure

Hi Jason,
Are you a member of Ontario Association of Child and Youth Counsellors? If not you should become a member because this is the Child and Youth Care Association. Their e-mail is Their phone number is 1-888-367-7193 and their address is R.R. #3 Harrowsmith, ON KOH 1V0

Hope this helps.

Dear Jason
I hope that you will contact the OACYC For support and additional information. They are doing quite a bit of work in this area right now. They have a set of presentation materials on the importance of regulation and other key issues.

Carol Stuart

Hi Jason,

There us no legislated college for CYCs in Ontario, and I am pretty sure we don't qualify for the College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers. We do have an Association – the Ontario Association of Child and Youth Counsellors. This might be your best option (assuming you have not checked it out).

Good Luck!
Tom Golightly
(I think we are in a common class at Ryerson this semester)

Hello Jason,

My name is Rebecca and I am currently taking the Child and Youth Care Counsellor Diploma at Mount Royal University in Calgary, AB. We have had many discussions in my program about the status of Child and Youth Care Counsellor's in Alberta as well as other provinces, as each province governs it's own rules.

To practice as Social Worker here in Alberta, you must be registered with a Diploma or Undergrad in Social Work. However as a Child and Youth Care Counsellor we cannot be "registered" as our provincial government does not recognize Child and Youth Care Counselling as a profession.

There are five key areas that need to be fulfilled to be recognized as a
- Become an occupation meaning there is full time as well as part time work available to staff.
- There are established educational institutions providing consistent training to students.
- There are professional associations that exist, for example
- There is a published and followed Code of Ethics which a Board of Members oversees. There must also be a consistent standard of professionalism that all members will follow.
- Members of the group begin implementing legislation that surrounds our field. There are 3 areas of Legislation that must be met:
– Licensure, where the province would grant a license to the Child and Youth Care Counsellor association, giving agencies the permission to practice in the province. This is to protect the well being society and regulate members of that agency (maybe similar to what you are experiencing, your agency may not be able to employ anyone but registered social workers.)
– Certification, where the province would certify individuals working in the field and ensuring that they meet the qualifications for their role.
– Accreditation, where the province would "check up on the agency" every couple years to ensure they are maintaining a certain standard of operation. This would result in a decision for the province to re-certify or not, a matter of ensuring there are checks and balances.

The problem that we are experiencing is that provincial governments do not recognize us as a profession. The only way that we can change this is through advocacy by our members to these governments. We must educate them that our positions are valuable and necessary to the children, youth and families that we serve. We must secure our identity as a profession through professionalism, education/training, and having a standard of practice by which we all follow.

In regards to the position that you applied for. There may not be an overwhelming response to the position and they may consider your application due to your training and experience; unless it is mandated that they can only hire RSW's. In regards to convincing them of your competency, maybe go through your programs syllabus' and evaluate what transferable skills you have been taught that will apply to the position your seeking. You can also provide your employer with the website for cyc-net or I would encourage you to become a member of the Ontario Association of Child and Youth Care Counsellors; your membership will show your commitment to the role of a Child and Youth Care Counsellor.

I hope that helps you,

Rebecca Robertson

I think qualification and formal recognition is what youth workers need globally – which is why I designed the free internet education in orphan child care, . According to users it helps them form a professional identity, gain recognition in society, and of course makes orphans grow better!
Have a look at the fifteen staff group sessions – it's in 8 languages now, and 16 more are on the way.

med venlig hilsen/ Yours sincerely

Niels Peter Rygaard


The information that everyone has provided will be very beneficial and helpful. I plan on joining the OACYC and contacting them regarding their strategic plan on dealing with this important issue. Currently the job postings I viewed indicated "All positions require registration or the ability to be registered with the College of Social Workers or College of Psychologists", preferably it should read "All positions require registration or ability to be registered with the College of Social Workers or College of Psychologists or the College of Child and Youth Workers"; Or another way of putting it "All positions require registration or ability to be registered with the College of Social Workers or equivalent". Currently I would go as far as indicating that some current employment practices incite a form of "qualification discrimination"? Is it not a form of bias to forbid an individual to apply for a job due to the inability to be certified by a college despite having all the qualifications and passing gateway tests that prove one's skill?

A thought experiment would be this: have a blinded panel of employers, interview 5 graduates with equal experience from Child and Youth Care program 5 from a BSW program and 5 from a Psychology program, and then present them with written portion of a test, a role-play and an interview. Afterward, the blinded panel would have to guess which individual belonged to which program and who would be their choice to employ? My guess would be that at least one of those individuals would be a CYC. Is it not discriminatory that the candidates despite a wonderful performance cannot get the job due to not belonging to a professional club? It would seem only logical that employers want the best qualified individual for their company? I am sure most standards for all the above mentioned programs would include sections outlawing discrimination? I hope everyone does not perceive my message as being critical or contemptuous; I am purely attempting to construct a compelling argument, which would seem to be supported by individuals who responded to my initial inquiry.

Very Respectfully;

Jason Guay

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