The Representative for Children and Youth supports children, youth and families who need help in dealing with the child-serving system.
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Dr. Jennifer Charlesworth is British Columbia's Representative for Children and Youth. She was appointed as Acting Representative effective Aug. 31, 2018, and confirmed in her appointment as Representative on Oct. 1, 2018.
Dr. Charlesworth has worked in the B.C. social and health care sectors since 1977. She lives in the traditional territories of the Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ peoples. She is an award-winning teacher, author, activist and a parent of two vibrant young women who remind her daily of the power and promise of young people.
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When you turn 19, you are no longer considered a child in care and you cannot typically live in a group home for children in care. One of our advocate can help provide information and discuss your options as you begin your transition out of care.
One of our advocates can listen to your concerns and assist you with having your voice heard and considered by your social worker. If you are still not happy with the social worker’s decision, an advocate can help you to file a complaint about the decision and ask that the decision be reconsidered. You do have a right to have your say about decisions that are being made on your behalf.
You can have a family member, friend, support worker or someone else you trust with you when you call the Rep. Otherwise, you can have that person call the Rep for you. For the fastest result, it is best to either call by yourself or have someone with you when you call. That way you will be connected with an advocate within one business day. Callers requesting advocacy services for you will be responded to within three business days.
The Rep and his staff work to make sure young adults who are eligible to access Community Living BC services get the help they need. They listen to you and make sure your rights are respected whenever a decision that affects you takes place. The Rep and his staff can connect you with other available services and champions in your community, and will give you some tips to speak on your own behalf.