Child and Youth Care in Canada: A Practical Guide

By: Heather Stewart and Richard Nash

Child and Youth Care in Canada: A Practical Guide
ISBN: 9781989941485 | © 2022
Print Price: $66.95 + shipping
Digital Price: $60.26

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Child and Youth Care in Canada: A Practical Guide provides students and professionals with a realistic introduction to all facets of a career in child and youth care. With a combined 55 years of experience on the front lines of child and youth care, authors Stewart and Nash offer a pragmatic approach to the field. Essential reading for students and recent graduates, this guide is loaded with rich scenarios of cases from the field, providing readers with opportunities to learn from real-life examples, and to develop a deeper appreciation of the rewards, challenges, and skills necessary to succeed in this rewarding profession. 

The authors explore the critical importance of offering support to children, youth, and families in their life space; the professional scope of practice; the core competencies of the child and youth care practitioner; ethical considerations; and applicable Canadian legislation related to child and youth work. In addition, they also discuss potential workplace settings, the therapeutic relationship, working with families, and evidence-based treatment options. Challenging topics are covered with sensitivity including recognizing child abuse and family violence, and offering approaches to practice in those difficult situations. The importance of self-care is addressed following coverage on recognizing and managing burnout and vicarious trauma. 


Case Files – Real-life case scenarios illustrate the application of key concepts in front-line practice

Pause to Reflect Boxes provide opportunities to analyze scenarios and apply learning from the chapter to decide on a course of action

Skills to Succeed Boxes tie the employability skills needed in today’s job market specifically to work in children and youth care

Margin Definitions – Key terms are defined in the margins and in the glossary for quick reference and review

Let’s Reflect – A reflection question at the end of each chapter prompts deeper thought and application of chapter concepts

Review Your Knowledge – Short-answer questions reinforce learning through application and analysis of chapter content

End-of-chapter Checklists allows for review and reflection

Chapter 1: Child and Youth Care in Canada

Chapter 2: Child and Youth Care Competencies

Chapter 3: The Role of a Child and Youth Care Practitioner

Chapter 4: Code of Ethics and Standards for Practice

Chapter 5: Canadian Child Protection and Youth Justice Acts

Chapter 6: Abuse and Its Impacts on Children and Adolescents

Chapter 7: The Therapeutic Relationship: Creating Professional Boundaries

Chapter 8: Evidence-Based Practice and Treatment Models

Chapter 9: Keeping Families Involved: Planning for Children Living with Kin or Kith

Chapter 10: Engaging Parents in Your Practice

Chapter 11: Burnout and Vicarious Trauma

Chapter 12: Balancing Education, Work, and Personal Life

Heather Stewart is a retired Child Protection Worker who continues to teach in the Child and Youth Care program at Centennial College. Previously, Heather was an instructor and placement advisor in the child and youth care program at Durham College. 

Heather has a B.Sc. in Child Psychology from the University of Toronto and is a current Certified Professional member of the Ontario Association of Child and Youth Care (OACYC). She is also a Level II Personality Dimensions Facilitator and a Certified Life Skills Coach. Heather has always had a passion for the “helping professions” and has been involved with children and youth for over 35 years. She has worked in various milieus and with various populations including, but not limited to, vocational rehabilitation, life skills coaching, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) Ontario, Autism Ontario, Geneva Foundation, Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences, child welfare, adoptions, specialized adoption kinship, and post secondary education. 

Richard Nash is a child and youth care practitioner currently employed at the Durham Children’s Aid Society. For the past 10 years he has been teaching at Centennial College in the Child and Youth Care Practitioner program as a part-time instructor and field placement supervisor. Richard had previously taught at Durham College in their CYCP program. 

At a very young age Richard realized he wanted to work with children, youth, and their families in a supportive, nurturing capacity. He has over 24 years of experience working in various milieus including, but not limited to, child and adolescent mental health, education, residential group home, hospital crisis centres, child protection, and human sex trafficking. 

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