Child, Youth & Family Supports
Community Services provides a range of community-based, prevention-oriented services to children, youth, and their families.
A mandated review of the Children and Family Services Act has been completed and has resulted in recommendations to help further strengthen this Act, which protects vulnerable children and youth in Nova Scotia.
The review was conducted by a project team made up of staff from the Department of Community Services, the Department of Justice and Mi'kmaw Family and Children's Services. Project team members came from diverse backgrounds including membership from the African Nova Scotian and Mi'kmaw communities.
The scope of this review was impacted as DCS navigated the pandemic and supported vulnerable Nova Scotians through the first wave of COVID-19. Given the exceptional nature of that time period, DCS chose three areas of the Act that warranted a closer look and that the department had capacity to review. Specifically, the review focused on:
- duty to report third party abuse
- prohibition on publications
- the child abuse register
We would like to thank our partners who contributed their ideas and expertise to this important work. We will continue to engage with them as we operationalize the recommendations contained within the review. It is important to note that any recommendations that may require legislative amendments will undergo further engagement.
The department remains committed to continuous improvement and we will now turn our attention to scoping the next mandated review of the Act in consultation with our stakeholders and partners. In the meantime, DCS is always open to conversations with our stakeholders and partners as we work to provide the best programs, services and supports to our province’s vulnerable children and youth.
Programs and resources
The different types of adoption, eligibility etc.
- Foster Care
Information for prospective foster parents.
- Child Abuse
Information for people who suspect a child is being abused.
- Prevention and Early Intervention
Prevention and early intervention within child welfare is a proactive and early approach to strengthening children, youth and families.
- Children in Care
When children can't remain in the home.
- Alternative Family Care
- Community Residential Services
This program provides placement services for children and youth in the care of the Minister of Community Services, who require more supervision and structure than is available in family foster care.
- Secure Care at The Wood Street Centre
A safe place for children and youth in crisis.
- Child Abuse Register
The Child Abuse Register is used by organizations to confirm that potential employees and volunteers have not been found by the court to have abused children.
- Post Care and Custody Agreements
Supports and services for youth leaving the child welfare system to help them complete a post-secondary educational program.
- Former Children in Care Disclosure
Apply for information contained in Department of Community Services files.
- By e-mail: Use our contact form