If you think a child is being harmed or neglected,
contact CFS at 1-866-345-9241.
Note: If this is an emergency, contact your local police emergency number.

What is Child and Family Services?

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What is a CFS Agency?

A child and family services (CFS) agency is the service delivery part of the CFS system. Check out the CFS Authorities and their agencies.

When children or families need the services of an agency, there is a way to help families decide which Authority might meet their needs best. Once a family makes a choice, the Authority assigns an agency to work with them.

The choice is called the Authority Determination Process, or ADP for short.

What is an ADP?

The Authority Determination Process (ADP) is used to identify which of the Child and Family Service (CFS) Authorities will oversee services for you and your family. The ADP is based on the following values:
  • All families have the right to choose their Authority
  • Services should meet clients’ cultural needs
  • Services must be reliable and timely
  • Children, families and communities belong together
  • Decisions will be made in the best interests of the children

How the Authority Determination Process (ADP) works

After determining that ongoing child and family services are needed, a CFS caseworker will ask some questions in an interview with the child and the family. The worker will ask questions about the family members and their cultural needs. The worker will tell the family about their options and then support them in choosing whatever Authority they think will serve them best.

Children and Youth

Based on their age and maturity, children and youth can also choose or help choose the Authority that’s best for them. In most cases, the final choice must be approved by the parent or legal guardian at the time. However, there are two exceptions.
  1. Youth in care who are making independent living arrangements (through a caseworker at a child and family services agency) can make their own decisions.
  2. Youth who are parents or who are receiving expectant parent services from a child and family services agency can make their own decisions.
In both of these cases, adult family members can advise, but the final choice is the child’s.

Terms Used During the Authority Determination Process (ADP)

  1. Culturally appropriate Authority – A family’s cultural needs are identified, based on the background of the family. They can choose the culturally appropriate Authority or a different Authority.
  2. Authority of service – The Authority the family chooses.  This Authority will assign one of its child and family service agencies to provide services to the family.
  3. Service provider – The service provider is the CFS agency that directly provides services to the family.

What is a CFS Authority?

The Child and Family Services Authorities

Four Child and Family Services Authorities manage child and family services throughout Manitoba.

Each of the Authorities creates and oversees one or more child and family service agencies. The agencies are the places that provide services to children and families.

What is the Child and Family Services Branch?

The Child and Family Services Branch is the government office that monitors and oversees the entire range of child and family services. It provides funding for all the services that are provided by Authorities and agencies (except for services delivered within First Nation reserve communities which are funded by the federal government). The Child and Family Services Branch also provides other services, including post-adoption services, the adoption registry, the Child Abuse Registry and other registries. It also licenses residential care facilities for children and licenses adoption agencies