Project Spotlight: Acorn Family Place

WrapAround Care for Families

To strengthen bonds between parents and their children by preventing and minimizing separation of families through the child welfare system


Families involved in multiple systems who have current involvement or are at risk of involvement with the child welfare system (Child and Family Services).



To provide support needed for families to:

  • Reduce social isolation
  • Improve confidence and mental health
  • Build relationships
  • Increase parent-child attachment
  • Help families reach their goals


The project hopes to achieve its objectives through a series of WrapAround supports including:

  • Relationship building – access visits between caregivers and their children and building a broader network of support for families.
  • Goal setting – families decide their priorities and who they want in their support networks.
  • Regular contact and family activities – support workers connect with families weekly and the program offers family programming.
  • Peer support – families with similar experiences connect to support each other through peer support groups.
  • Material support – access to basic needs and resources such as clothing, food and diapers.
  • Cultural connections -families are invited to culturally responsive events and activities that create a broader sense of community belonging.



  • Community
  • Family

Implementation sites

  • Winnipeg, Manitoba


  • Families facing barriers like poverty, housing insecurity, racism, and intergenerational trauma were disproportionately affected when services they relied on were scaled back during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Child welfare involvement and the separation of families through Child and Family Services became more likely among families most impacted by the stress and social isolation of COVID-19 and the resulting increase in family violence, problematic substance use, and poor mental health.
  • Harm from separation of families through Child and Family Services can be prevented with adequate supports.
  • Initial results and demand for the WrapAround program demonstrated a need to continue and expand it.


In the words of the project team members

“Our long-term goal would be to reduce the number of children in care or reduce the amount of time that people are separated from their parents or from their children. We really want to make sure that those bonds can remain intact because we know that the bond between a parent and a child is sacred.”

“We know that people are the experts of their own lives. We know that they have every capability and capacity in the world to do what they need to do. But there’s so many barriers that are put up in society that break down trust and relationship and safety.”

Key protective factors

  • Positive family relationships
  • Supportive relationships in the community
  • Self-determination and control of one’s life
  • Involvement in community and group activities
  • Access to health and support services

Key approaches

  • Trauma-informed
  • Harm reduction
  • Culturally safe/informed
  • Wrap-around model of care
  • Peer support