While the COVID-19 response has delayed the official opening of the Cochrane and Area Family Resource Network (FRN), its numerous resources remain available to Cochrane area residents.

The staff is ensuring residents have uninterrupted access to support, resources, information, and referrals, says FCSS manager Kim Krawec.

"Even though our doors are closed, we have people working at home remotely, and we're providing all the same services," she says.

They can help with access to food, housing support, information on financial benefits, supportive counselling, and individual parenting support.

Also, a variety of parent education programs and child development programs are being offered online.

"Families can call and get parenting support over the phone or virtually," says Krawec. "We're offering a whole variety of different parenting access online that people can access through Zoom and different ways."

"Our team is highly creative, and they're offering a whole range of programs from child development programs to post-partum depression support groups all online. Parents can jump in and get the support they need, even though it's not face-to-face."

Programs and services can be accessed by calling 403-851-2250.

It's been over a month since Alberta Children's Services announced the successful contractors for the FRB, which provides support, resources, information, and referrals for families with children birth to 18 in Cochrane and area

Cochrane has been designated a medium-sized community by Alberta Children's Service. 

Cochrane Family and Community Support Services (FCSS) is receiving funding for an FRN hub that provides child development and parent capacity-building programs.

Services offered through the Cochrane FRN will include:

  • Essential needs programs for families with children birth to 18
  • Supportive counselling and referrals to other services
  • System navigation and advocacy
  • Early childhood development programs
  • Developmental screening
  • Parent education
  • Rural early childhood development programs

The town was unsuccessful in receiving funding for home visitation services, support for families with children aged seven to 13, and support for at-risk youth and their families

Calgary's Children’s Cottage Society was awarded the home visitation contract for the Cochrane area.

The Boys & Girls Club of Cochrane & Area continues to receive funding to provide provide preventative programming for children and youth aged seven to 18.

The goal is to have the FRN located in the former location of ParentLink, 127 1st Ave. Renovations will be required.

The FCSS office, just across the street, will be the hub for their adult programs and services.

In November, the town was informed Alberta Children's Services was changing its funding model and would no longer fund the Resource Centre, Parent Link Centre, or Home Visitation Program effective March 31, 2020

The Resource Centre served Cochrane and area residents for over 20 years, and the Parent Link Centre, 14 years