Conference - Excellence in Child and Youth Care, 2014

2014 Provincial Conference

“Excellence in Child and Youth Care: Promoting the Profession”

June 4-6, 2014 – Kingston, ON

In Association with St. Lawrence College

The OACYC provincial conference was an event that brought the child and youth work profession together to highlight excellence in our field.  Child and youth care practitioners from across the province, as well as representatives from across Canada and the United States attended.  Attendees included frontline workers, supervisors, managers, students and educators.

A Reception was hosted by Bartimeaus the night before the conference began to welcome out of town guests and presenters and to connect conference attendees.



Over the three days we participated in workshops and presentations that highlighted excellence in child and youth care, we were moved, amused and educated by our keynote speakers, Jack Phelan and Laura Arndt, we held our AGM and the certification exam, and shopped the swag and resources available.




Attendees came together to celebrate on Pub Night, sponsored by Broken Arrow, and at our Banquet Dinner.











We presented the first OACYC Award of Excellence to Bill Carty.  This award honours individuals who demonstrate excellence in the field of child and youth care.  Congratulations Bill!


We celebrated the winner of the Dennis McDermott Career Achievement Award, recognizing the outstanding lifetime career accomplishments of our member, Kathy Neff and her dedication to the Ontario Association of Child and Youth Counsellors.  Congratulations Kathy!


A special thank you to our sponsorsBartimaeus Inc., Broken Arrow, CYC-NET, Source Re Source, and Transformation!  You helped to make this conference a brilliant success.


Attending a conference provides opportunities to learn and continue to develop your skills.  It is also a great time to make new connections and reconnect with those you have worked or met with before.  We were so pleased to receive the letter below from Andrew, a conference attendee.

June 7, 2014

To the OACYC Board,

I wanted to thank you for the experiences I had at the OACYC conference this
week. Not only did you give me the opportunity to reconnect with old friends,
but also make many new friends that have helped me to remember why I love
being a Child and Youth Care Worker.

I was able to talk to and interact with some real icons in my field; Mike Burns,
Thom Garfat, James Freeman and Jack Phelan to name a few. It really was such
an awe inspiring experience speaking with these men, listening to their stories
and experiences and having them listen to mine.

I found it very interesting at this conference to be in the position that I found
myself in. Being in the field for almost 20 years now, I was having students and
younger Youth Counsellors coming up to me and asking me about my experiences
and asking my opinions on how I would deal with the issues they are struggling
with. It is amazing how fast you go from being a "newbie" to being a "dinosaur"
in this field.

This conference had a profound impact not only on my professional life, but also
my personal life. Only a few months ago I was considering leaving this field as I
wasn't sure I still had it in me to continue working with today's youth. Not only
have I been rejuvenated, but I don't think I could see myself doing anything else.

Thank you so much,

Andrew Thomas CYW, CYC (cert.)