Canada opens trauma informed specialised ECEC service - will Australia follow?

Canada opens trauma informed specialised ECEC service – will Australia follow?

by Freya Lucas

October 07, 2020

Young Canadians who have experienced adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) such as living with abuse and neglect, or experiencing a humanitarian crisis, will receive a range of “wraparound” services at the country’s first trauma informed early childhood education and care (ECEC) service. 


To be operated by not for profit organisation The United Way, a federated network of 77 local United Way Centraide offices serving more than 5,000 Canadian communities, the Little Phoenix Daycare will be located in the city of Victoria, which is the capital of the Canadian province of British Columbia. 


Once sufficient funding has been raised, the service will help care for those who have experienced trauma as a result of a variety of difficult situations, including family violence, sexual, psychological, physical and emotional abuse, or living in a refugee camp.


Speaking with local publication The Kingston Whig-Standard, fundraiser Jane Taylor Lee, executive director of Family Services of Greater Victoria explained the importance of such a service in supporting children and families at a time when waitlists for services such as child psychology can be up to a year long. 


To overcome this barrier, the Little Phoenix will use a curriculum which is tailored to create a sense of safety and belonging, as well as offering services from specialist staff such as trauma counsellors, art therapists and other childhood experts.


As well as supporting children and families, it is hoped that the service will also contribute to the design and delivery of other trauma-informed daycares in B.C. and Canada, and work towards overcoming the lifetime effects that ACEs can have as children grow to adulthood. 


To read the original coverage of this story, as written by Glenda Luymes for The Kingston Whig-Standard, please see here. 

For information on ACEs and their role in the lived experience of children, see here