The Coalition of Manitoba Cultural Communities for Families was born in 2017 after many years
as the General and Child and Family Services Authority (GA) “Reference Group.” This Reference
Group was formed in 2010 as part of the GA’s New Canadian Awareness and Education
Initiative, to increase ethno-cultural communities’ contribution to the development of the New
Canadian Initiative’s strategic directions.

Over the years, this group of committed cultural community contacts and informal leaders met
and developed relationships within the child welfare system, with a view of ensuring
community voices would be heard, validated and respected within policy development and
support systems. Our objective was to create and sustain better child welfare practices for all
community families and their children. Through this process, we identified a need to adjust the
scope to encompass a broader array of support systems and agencies that communities engage
with. We have organized multiple events that have facilitated mutual learning and built
community capacity to educate and inform the navigation of complex organizational layers and
public policy.

The Coalition continues to focus on creating an open and transparent environment.
Membership, roles and responsibilities remain open and flexible so as to ensure the structure
will continually evolve with community needs.