The Slaight Family Foundation invests $1 million to support children and families impacted by domestic violence

Mother and daughter both smiling with their heads together and looking at the camera

Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada is deeply grateful to announce a transformational new investment of $1 million from the Slaight Family Foundation in support of Mothers in Mind – an innovative, first-of-its-kind initiative that’s changing the lives of women and children experiencing domestic violence.

The family’s gift, which was made public on February 8, is part of a broader commitment of $15 million in support of 12 organizations across Canada focused on addressing the needs of women and girls.

Strengthening mother-child relationships for a brighter future ahead

Designed by the Child Development Institute (CDI), Mothers in Mind is an evidence-based, trauma-informed group intervention for mothers who have experienced trauma – including domestic violence – and are parenting children under the age of four.

The program recognizes how experiences of domestic violence can impact a mother’s ability to respond to her child, which in turn can negatively affect a child’s social-emotional development.

The need is great.

In Canada, calls to social service agencies about abuse at home have doubled since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, reflecting a deepening crisis of violence against women. Even before COVID-19, 44 per cent of women in Canada reported having experienced some form of violence at the hands of their intimate partner.

The impacts of domestic violence extend far beyond the women experiencing abuse. Children who bear witness to violence at home or are victims of violence themselves face significant short- and long-term emotional, behavioural and academic challenges that put them at risk of a lifetime of adversity. These impacts are most pronounced for children under four, who are at greatest risk of negative outcomes due to their developmental vulnerabilities.

By helping mothers build strong and nurturing emotional bonds with their young children in a playful and supportive environment, Mothers in Mind is empowering healthy child development and better outcomes for both mothers and children.

The program is currently being offered through select community organizations and child welfare agencies in Ontario with funding from Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada donors, and will be scaled to more communities in Ontario and Manitoba thanks to the Slaight Family Foundation’s transformational gift.

Celebrating the power of caring Canadians to change lives

We are deeply grateful to the Slaight Family Foundation for their visionary gift to help change the lives of women and children experiencing domestic violence.

If you are interested in joining our community of caring and compassionate donors, please consider making a special gift online or by calling 416-923-0924.

Your gift will play a crucial role in helping us continue designing and delivering life-changing, evidence-based programs like Mothers in Mind that address the needs of our country’s most vulnerable children, youth and families.

To learn more about Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada, please visit our website.