About Us

Transformational Leaders

The Catholic Children’s Aid Foundation (CCAF) is a not-for-profit charity whose primary goal is to support, through fund raising and program grants, the non-governmental-provided needs of the Catholic Children’s Aid Society of Toronto (CCAS).

These grants include many traditional programs of a transactional nature, including Emergency Needs Funding, Christmas Sharing, Sacramental Funding, administration of external grants and, recently, the provision of large, multi-year, transformative initiatives designed to promote the disruption of traditionally accepted truths in the child welfare space.

CCAS Collaboration

These transformational initiatives are developed in close collaboration with our partners in the CCAS. This ensures that the fund raising and granting activities are grounded in an acute understanding of the environment and needs of children and youth in the child welfare space.

We are currently midway through program grants which support activities related to the changing focus of workers away from intervention and toward sustaining the integrity of the family structure and, additionally, the rollout of a major new youth readiness initiative which recognizes the urgency of better preparing young adults to the realities and perils of life in the real world.

Early History

In 1893, the Ontario Government introduced the “Act for the Prevention of Cruelty to, and Better Protection of Children”. The Act sought to protect children by punishing those guilty of neglecting them. It provided for Children’s Aid Societies, giving them authority to apprehend children who were neglected or without parents or guardians.

At the same time, there was a widespread approach to ‘saving’ children removed from their families and the Catholic children placed in other-than-Catholic surroundings, were subject to a good deal of proselytizing. Although a Children’s Aid Society had already been established in Toronto, this prompted a movement to form a Society to meet the specific needs of the Catholic population.

Under the stewardship of the Most Reverend John Walsh, Archbishop of Toronto, the St. Vincent de Paul Society of Toronto was incorporated on October 22, 1894. 

Today’s CCAS, the progeny of this early organization continues to be grounded in the Vincention values of compassion, humility and generosity.

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