What We Do
Métis Family Services is delegated under the Child, Family, and Community Services Act (CFCSA) to provide child safety and family support services to Métis children and families living in the Surrey, Delta, White Rock, Ladner area; as well as, guardianship, adoption, and resources services to Métis children and youth placed in foster homes in the Greater Vancouver region.
Métis Family Services is committed to working collaboratively with Métis families and our community to increase their capacity to nurture and care for their children in an inclusive manner that honours and celebrates their Métis heritage.
The objective of this agency is in the most inclusive, dignified, and professional manner possible to:
Provide direct support and services to Métis families struggling with challenges related to the safety and well-being of their children.
Provide direct support to foster families and adoptive families of Métis children who have been placed in
our care under the Child Family and Community Services Act.
Provide ongoing personal and culturally based support to Métis children and youth who are involved in the child welfare system.
Provide cultural education, celebration and recreational activities to Métis children and their birth,
extended, foster and adoptive families.
Métis Family Services is the service delivery agency of the Métis community organization called "La Societe De les Enfants Michif."
Métis Family Services is committed to working collaboratively with children and families; supporting our communities, while increasing capacity to nurture and care for children and families in an inclusive manner that honours Métis traditions and culture.
Métis Family Services is a non-profit society whose vision is to advocate for "a world in which Métis children (all children) and families have the right to family ties, security, culture, love, acceptance and opportunities for success."
Our Core Values
Métis Family Services works in an inclusive, professional, culturally appropriate and trusting, environment. We strive for honesty, openness, and quality in everything we do, and treat our staff, Métis families and
community with dignity and respect.
We follow the 12 Core Metis Values in everything we do and in the treatment of our staff, Métis children, families, and communities. The Values are:
KWAYESH CHI TOTAMIK (HONESTY)
NI MAAMAA LA TAYR (MOTHER EARTH)
PA IKSITII (PATIENCE)
LA FORS (STRENGTH)
AND AANJEURII (TOLERANCE)
as taken from “The Giving Tree: A retelling of a Traditional Metis Story” by Leah Dorion and Norman Fleury.
Our Board of Directors
Métis Family Services is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors. The Boards' role is to ensure that all programming is consistent with our agency's Vision, Mission, and Values.
Our Board of Directors
President of the Board
Jenelle identifies as Secwepemc, Tsimshian, Métis with Coureurs des bois ancestry (Southwestern Quebec, Outaouais & Laurentides, Riverere du Nord and Vaudreuil-Sovlanges French Settlers), Scottish, Spanish as well as French. Jenelle is of the Wolf Clan, and lives off grid, following her culture and traditions as taught to her through Elders. Jenelle enjoys arts and culture in her spare time such as brain tanning animals that they have hunted themselves. She uses the leather or rawhide to make moccasins, vests, bags, feather fans, beading, bracelets, drums and rattles, regalia, chockers, mask making and so much more. Jenelle attends cultural ceremonies and has been a dancer for 30+ years. Culture and spirituality are at the forefront of her daily living.
Jenelle has been working with our Indigenous people for over 30 years in many different roles, as a First Nation’s Support Worker, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Specialist, Educator and Trainer, Trauma Therapist, Chemical Addictions Specialist Level 3, Aboriginal Foster Parent and Knowledge Keeper. She has developed curriculum for Colleges and Universities throughout Canada. She worked in the Downtown East Side for approximately 20 years. Jenelle was also a residential firefighter as well as a trainer for firefighter’s, Level 1. Jenelle developed and published educational resources for children, youth and communities. She is a National and International presenter having presented workshops throughout Canada, New Zealand, Rarotonga and the USA. She has been a board member with Metis Family Services since 2012.
Our Board of Directors
Treasurer of the Board
Blair has successfully worked for over 40 years in the Canadian and US Aboriginal/Native American community as a Registered Social Worker. He has contributed to community development; the creation of Aboriginal political organizations in BC; training alcohol and drug counsellors; managing a treatment centre; counselling, coordination, networking and collaboration among Aboriginal service provider organizations and agencies in Vancouver; and documentary film-making on such topics as alcoholism recovery, Native American traditional dance, FASD prevention, and Native American history. Blair’s current enthusiasms and passions are FASD education and prevention; improving services in child protection, and on-going support for children in care and their families.
Vice President of the Board
Native name: White Hawk Woman, given to her by the grandmothers.
Maria’s heritage is Anishinabe from Red River Settlement on her father’s side, and Swedish on her mother’s side. Maria has been working with our Indigenous people for 20 years in many different capacities. She has held the Mètis seat on the Fraser Valley Aboriginal Health Council for 5 years and then went on to develop team building strategies and workshops for Seabird Island, and Mètis Family Services; while helping to create “Mission” and “Vision” statements. Currently, Maria is working with MCFD as an Elder in “Circle 5”, and taking on the task of helping Indigenous people.
Maria is a Certified Life-skills Coach and Human Relations Counsellor, a Certified Employment Counsellor, a Laser/Light Therapy Practitioner, a Nutritional Consultant, and has a Master Cannabis Certification and a Provincial Instructor Diploma.
Along with the above, Maria is a mother of two beautiful daughters and has also been blessed with a granddaughter. In her spare time, Maria enjoys watching her daughter play Fastball. She also loves to cook and enjoys migrating somewhere warm in the winter.
Director of the Board
Jim McLaughlin re-joined Métis Family Services Society Board of Directors in January2022 having been a member previously from 2013-15. He currently sits as a member of the Finance Committee and as a member at large. His passion has been community collaboration within aboriginal and Métis communities. He is committed to good governance and service to the Métis community.
Jim has consulted widely in the human services arena, including involvement in a variety of provincial ministerial committees and initiatives. He has a passion to involve communities in service development and governance. He has also provided leadership in building collaborative services in those communities that Métis Family Services Society serves.
Jim is a graduate of the Human Services Program at Western Washington University. His Service career started as a Police Officer in Regina, Saskatchewan and then Social Worker with what was then The Social Welfare Department also in Regina. After moving to Vancouver in 1969 he had been employed by The Children’s Foundation for 39 years in a variety of Counselling, supervisory and management roles, culminating in his appointment as Executive Director in 2002 until his retirement in 2014. Jim has wide experience in child care, family treatment and support to Foster Caregivers. He has broadly consulted in organizational development, administration and human resource management.