Our History

The professional association of Child Care Workers was incorporated, August 1, 1969, as the Child Care Workers Association of Ontario (CCWAO). With the development of standardized training programs in the community colleges, degree programs, a professional journal, and provincial and national conferences, the profession expanded rapidly throughout Ontario. The role of the CYC also expanded well beyond the traditional residential worker in psychiatric facilities for children and adolescents. With these new roles and status came a new name. In 1989 the CCWAO became the Ontario Association of Child and Youth Counsellors. In 1999, the OACYC became the largest CYC association in North America.  In 2015, the OACYC becomes the Ontario Association of Child and Youth Care.

Highlights of the OACYC

  • 1959 – the formation and first meeting of the OACYC is held, then called the Thistletown Association of Child Care Workers, in Rexdale, Ontario
  • 1967 – the first branch of the Child Care Workers Association of Ontario (CCWAO) was formed in Ottawa
  • 1968 – the first provincial conference “Conference on Professional Practice,” specifically for CYCs, is sponsored by the Lions Club for the CCWAO, and held in Toronto August 1,
  • 1969 – The CCWAO, with letters patent granted by the provincial government, was established
  • 1972 – The Journal of Child Care published its first issue
  • 1976 – The CCWAO led in having the Ministry of Education establish standardized curriculum for Child Care Worker Programs in Ontario Colleges of Applied Arts and Technology
  • 1979 – The criteria was established and accreditation set for Full Members in the CCWAO
  • 1980 – CCW Week declared for the first time, in Kingston, to coincide with the CCWAO conference there
  • 1983 – The CCWAO hosts the 3rd National CYC conference in Toronto
  • 1983 – A committee established by CCWAO to promote a BA degree in CYC in Ontario
  • 1983 – The CCWAO becomes a founding member of the Council of Canadian Child and Youth Care Associations, the national professional association for CYCs in Canada
  • 1985 – The Association adopts a Code of Ethics 
  • 1989 – The CCWAO became the Ontario Association of Child and Youth Counsellors (OACYC)
  • 1989 – The first Ontario CYC was killed on the job, Krista Sepp, while working in a group home in Midland Ontario; OACYC joins a committee to establish an award in her name
  • 1997 – The OACYC co-sponsors the first International CYC Conference in Ontario, the “5th International” in June, in Toronto
  • 1999 - With over 600 professional members, OACYC becomes the largest CYC association in North America
  • 1999 – Conditions are put in place for the use of "CYC (Cert.)" as a professional designation for child and youth workers meeting OACYC standards
  • 2002 – The establishment of Profession Development Credits required by all Full Members to maintain their professional membership in the OACYC
  • 2003 – The total membership (all categories) passes the 1,500 mark
  • 2005 – CYC WEEK in Ontario is moved to the first full week in May as part of International CYC Week
  • 2006 – The total membership (all categories) passes the 2000 mark
  • 2009 – The OACYC Celebrates its 50th Anniversary by hosting a Provincial Conference in Toronto, ON
  • 2009 – The OACYC establishes the Dennis McDermott Career Achievement Award to celebrate the lifetime commitment and contributions of CYC’s enhancing the profession
  • 2009 – The retirement of Dennis McDermott, the first OACYC Executive Director
  • 2010 – The Chronicle newsletter moves to an online format
  • 2012 -  CYCCB Certification Process Adopted by the OACYC
  • 2014 – The OACYC establishes the Award of Excellence to honour individuals who demonstrate excellence in the field of child and youth care
  • 2014 – The OACYC adopts a new Code of Ethics
  • 2014 – The OACYC becomes the Ontario Association of Child and Youth Care
  • 2015 - Legislation Report/Proposal, Safeguarding the Other 23 Hours, is released by the OACYC
  • 2017 – Formal Request for Regulation is delivered to the Ministry of Children and Youth Services
  • 2017 - OACYC accepted stewardship of the Krista Sepp Memorial Awards