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Family Resources

At McMaster Children’s Hospital, there are several resources available to patients and families.

Community Education Service

The Community Education Service (CES) of the Child and Youth Mental Health Program provides educational courses and skills training workshops to the community on a variety of topics, including parenting, child development and child & youth mental health concerns. Programs are available for children, youth and caregivers, and are held regularly at locations across the Greater Hamilton Area (GHA).

October-December 2020 Courses

View our free, educational programs and resources for parents, youth and children offered through the Child & Youth Mental Health Program Community Education Service.

View courses

YourSpace Hamilton virtual courses

Our in-person workshops are currently paused due to the pandemic, but virtual courses and webinars for youth and parents/caregivers are offered through our partner, Lynwood Charlton Centre, at yourspacehamilton.ca. If you’re interested in receiving email updates about upcoming courses, please send your email address to communityeducationse@hhsc.ca.

View the course list.

Featured Courses

Know Fear*
Now full, please email to be added to the waitlist 

Know Fear is an educational anxiety group for children ages 8-12 yrs. and their caregiver(s). Together, the family will learn what stressors most effect their child, identify how the child reacts to these worries/fears, and how to deal with them in a positive and effective way. This is not a treatment group. Limited spots available.

Wednesday October 21, 28 November 4, 11, 18, 25, 5:30-6:30pm

Stress Less for Teens (single session)

Teens will learn:

1. What to do when I’m stressed out
2. Getting to know my feelings
3. Mindfulness and relaxation

Monday, Nov. 16 (5-6pm)

Register online.


Here is a link to recorded webinars on various topics that you may find helpful:

Parenting Webinars
Anxiety in our Child and Youth
Helping Your Child or Youth with Stress
Parents: Take Care of Yourself

Hamilton Health Sciences has created a #CaringduringCOVID video series to support families and children.. Here a few examples of ones you may find helpful.

Dealing with Big Emotions
Praise goes a long way
Radical acceptance may help families cope
Tips to avoid the cycle of anxiety
Supporting children with ADHD
Dealing with Sibling Conflict

We have also enclosed some useful handouts.

Self-care tips for Parents
Giving your Child Tools for a Healthy Life
Positive Parenting Tips
Why Won’t They Listen: Tips for talking to your children

Family Resource Centre

A Family Resource Centre is available for families to access resources, books, and DVDs. It is located in the main lobby of the Ron Joyce Children’s Health Centre. The Family Resource Centre has a lending library and is open to the public. Please contact frc@hhsc.ca for more information.

Learn more about the Family Resource Centre.

Pro Bono Ontario

Pro Bono Ontario (PBO) is a free legal service located at the Ron Joyce Children’s Health Centre for patients and families of McMaster Children’s Hospital referred by clinical staff. It combines the efforts of clinicians and lawyers in the pursuit of better child health outcomes. The project helps low and moderate income patients and families deal with legal challenges that impact the patient’s health and/or the family’s capacity to care for their sick child, addressing the social determinants of health. For example, parents losing employment because they are caring for a sick child; health related housing issues; special education; benefits related to child’s health; immigration, etc. (does not deal with complaints about MCH or staff of MCH).

A triage lawyer, Hilary Mack is located on site to meet with families and clinicians. Her primary roles include:

  • Consultations with clinicians and families: The consultation may result in (1) information or advice passed to the clinician, (2) a brief service and/or advice provided directly to the parent/patient, (3) referral of the case to a pro bono lawyer. Two law firms – Ross McBride and Gowlings (as well as other private lawyers) – provide pro bono representation to clients referred by the triage lawyer.
  • Training hospital clinicians: Available for rounds to help clinicians identify legal issues that impact patient health or a family’s capacity to manage their child’s care.
  • Involvement in systemic issues: More broad-based advocacy concerning laws and policies that frequently impact the children and families.

Please contact frc@hhsc.ca for more information.

Growing Together Guide - Sept/Oct 2020

View our Growing Together guide for parent education, courses, workshops, and groups taking place in September and October 2020.