2019 National Award Winners and Finalists: Celebrating extraordinary people who improve the lives of abused, abandoned or neglected children or youth

Lynn Factor Stand Up for Kids logo

The Lynn Factor Stand Up for Kids National Award at the Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada recognizes dedication, effort, service, contribution, impact and extraordinary measures taken to improve the lives of abused, abandoned or neglected children and youth.

The Award spotlights these leaders and amplifies their stories to inspire and encourage others to social action, specifically to “Stand Up for Kids”.

Irwin Elman

Irwin Elman headshot

As the Former Ontario Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth from 2008-2019, Irwin Elman has dedicated his life and career to child and youth advocacy. The Advocate’s Office worked to make sure young people knew their rights, their opinions were taken into account in matters that concerned them and their voices were heard.

As the 2021 National Award winner, Irwin selected Feathers of Hope, Hairstory, and Ontario Child Advocacy Coalition to share a $50,000 grant.

Leaders who have made a big difference in the lives of children and youth

This year’s exceptional finalists have also made significant contributions to improve the lives of abused, abandoned or neglected children and youth.

Sara Austin headshot

Sara Austin

A champion for children, Sara Austin is the Founder and CEO of Children First Canada. With more than 20 years of experience advocating for the rights of kids in Canada and on the global stage, Sara leads a national movement to make Canada the best place in the world for kids to grow up.

Melanie Doucet headshot

Melanie Doucet

As a former youth in care, Melanie Doucet is very passionate about providing youth currently and formerly in care with opportunities to voice their opinions and influence government policies. Currently in the second year of her PhD in social work at McGill University’s School of Social Work, Melanie joined the Centre for Research on Children and Families as part of the Building Research Capacity project in 2014.

Wade Johnston headshot

Wade Johnston

Wade Johnston is the executive director of Chisholm Services for Children in Halifax, Nova Scotia. At Chisholm, Wade helps provides a place for children 12 and younger to live when they are not able to be at home. Wade believes all children deserve a place where they will be cared for and given a chance to fulfill their potential.

Heather Modlin headshot

Dr. Heather Modlin

Dr. Heather Modlin is the Provincial Director of Key Assets Newfoundland and Labrador. She was first introduced to residential care when, after graduation, she worked in a group home for adults with developmental disabilities. Since then she has dedicated her career to providing provide therapeutic family-based care (foster care).

Tammy Roberts headshot

Tammy Roberts

Since 1991, Tammy Roberts has been a committed parent, providing emergency and long term care to approximately 250 NWT foster children and youth with mild to extreme learning and behavioural disabilities. As the executive director of the Foster Family Coalition of the Northwest Territories, Tammy facilitates PRIDE Training and provides support to foster and adoptive parents and child protection workers across the territory.

Congratulations to Irwin, Sara, Melanie, Wade, Heather and Tammy!