Three Decades Of Accomplishment:

The Institute’s Programs

The concern of the founding members of the Institute’s Board was for the long-term good health of Canadian families. They defined their mandate not as providers of services to families but rather that of undertaking and commissioning research and engaging in advocacy so as to strengthen the social structures that serve families. In its first three decades of service, the Institute has successfully met that commitment.

The programs of the Institute generally fall into four categories:

  • Research
  • Public education
  • Consultation
  • Advocacy

Through these programs, the Institute consolidates and interprets research findings, and provides up-to-date and objective information on trends and issues related to Canadian families to a network of individuals and organizations representing a wide variety of interests.


Research, on broad issues affecting families and on a special project basis, is commissioned, encouraged and undertaken so as to further the goals of Canadian families. Data is distilled from many sources—academia, social agencies, government departments, and other primary research groups—into available and authoritative information about family and on the position of family in society.

Public Education

Publications, public presentations, media interviews, and speeches serve to inform Canadians on issues pertaining to families. The Canadian Family Data Service delivers up-to-date and accurate information to elected officials, politicians, researchers, educators and students, family professionals, community organizers, and members of the public.


The Institute conducts its work through the development of strategic program partnerships with public and private institutions, corporations, the media and with organizations within the nonprofit sector.

As a public resource, the Institute provides informed and sophisticated advice and critiques of social policy to the government, media and serving agencies. It is the single most relied upon source of concise, balanced and practical information on families in Canada.


Advocacy on behalf of Canada’s families takes place as a result of each of the activities listed above.


  • Distinguished Service to Families Partnership Award, 2000 presented by the BC Council for Families.
  • Community Partner’s Award, 1998 presented by the Nova Scotia Council for the Family.
  • Distinguished Leadership and Service to Families Award, 1996 was presented by the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.
  • Leadership Award, 1995 was presented by Family Service Canada.
  • Distinguished Service to Family Award, 1995 was presented by the National Council on Family Relations.