Community Partners

A number of Community Partners have formally committed to collaborating with VOICE in research, educational and practice development activities. These Community Partners represent a wide range of perspectives that are vital toward ensuring integrated knowledge production and utilization in childhood ethics. These include representatives from youth groups, parent groups, youth advocates, policy makers, and a number of children's services providers. Our current Community Partners are listed below.


Nathalie Bouchard

Nathalie Bouchard is a Member of the Family Advisory Forum and Parent Representative on the Pediatric Ethics Committee, both at the Montreal Children's Hospital.

Canadian Association of Paediatric Health Centres (CAPHC)

The Canadian Association of Paediatric Health Centres is a non-profit organization that brings together many healthcare organizations across the country representing multidisciplinary health professionals providing health services for children, youth and their families. CAPHC is committed to promoting, facilitating, and advocating for national health delivery guidelines supported by evidence. All Canadian children’s hospitals and their respective Foundations are members of CAPHC, thereby providing linkages to clinical care, education and research. CAPHC's mandate is to affect system-wide change in the delivery of health services to children and youth across Canada.
Elaine Orrbine is the President and CEO of CAPHC.

Canadian Family Advisory Network

The Canadian Family Advisory Network (CFAN) is a national network of family advisory groups across Canada. These groups are associated with hospitals, hospices, health regions and rehab facilities. Members are either family representatives or staff liaisons for the councils. CFAN is supported through a partnership with the Canadian Association of Pediatric Health Centers (CAPHC).

Kevin W. Coughlin

Dr. Coughlin, MD, MHSc (Bioethics), FRCPC, is the Past Chair of the Bioethics Committee of the Canadian Pediatrics Society.  He is an Associate Professor of Paediatrics in the Division of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine at Western University in London, Ontario; Co-Director of Perinatal Outreach in the Department of Paediatrics at the Children's Hospital of Western Ontario; Associate Scientist in the Division of Maternal, Fetal & Newborn Health at the Children's Health Research Institute; and President of the Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine Section of the Canadian Paediatrics Society.

Irwin Elman

Irwin Elman, B.A., M.A(Ed), is the Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth Ontario. He is the Former Director of Client Service at Central Toronto Youth Services and Former Manager of the Pape Adolescent Resource Centre in Toronto (PARC). Mr. Elman received the Outstanding Achievement Recognition Award from the Ontario Ministry of Children and Youth Services. He is one of “10 Canadian Heroes of 2006” selected by MacLean’s Magazine and he received the Outstanding Youth Service Award from the Ontario Association of Children’s Aid Societies in 2003. He also received an Honorary Degree from the University of Guelph-Humber.

Barb Farlow

Barb Farlow, B.Eng. Sci., MBA, is an Adviser for the DeVeber Institute for Bioethics and Social Research in Toronto and Cofounder of the International 13/18 Trisomy Alliance.

Frank Gavin

Frank Gavin, M.A., is a National Liaison for the Canadian Family Advisory Network. He is a Board Member for the Institute of Families for Child and Youth Mental Health; Board Member for the Ontario SPOR Support Unit; Advisory Board Member of the CIHR Institute of Human Development, Child and Youth Health; Public Member of the Canadian Drug Expert Committee at The Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health; and Steering Committee Member on the Community for Brain Development.

Aaleya Gilani

Aaleya Gilani, RN, B.Sc., MBA, is the Head of Health/Liaison programs at the Northern Quebec Module, which is based in Montreal. The Northern Quebec Module meets a regional mandate for the Nunavik communities by providing a link between the health institutions in the University Integrated Health Network(RUIS) McGill in Montreal and Nunavik. The MNQ provides accommodation, transport and the services of nurses and interpreters in order to plan the stay of the Inuits receiving health care in Montreal.

Inter-tribal Youth Centre (ITYC) (at the Native Friendship Centre of Montreal)

Inter-tribal Youth Centre (ITYC) is a project of the Native Friendship Centre of Montreal (NFCM). The ITYC aims to provide all Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal youths in Montreal a safe, welcoming, and non-judgemental environment, including choices of activities in order to improve their livelihood. Many of our First Nations, Métis, and Inuit youths come from a variety of backgrounds such as the Arctic North and even from urban Montreal. This population consistently faces the challenging conditions of urban environments such as hunger, homelessness, prejudice, and unemployment. We collaborate with community organizations and individuals to develop diverse programs that aim to improve and maintain their physical health and spirituality, to discover and develop their artistic talents and interests, and to express and expand their traditional knowledge and culture.
Ashanti Rosado is the Youth Coordinator at the Native Friendship Centre of Montreal.

Louise Kinross

Louise Kinross is special projects manager at Holland Bloorview and editor of BLOOM, a magazine on parenting children with disabilities. BLOOM gives voice to the joys and challenges of special-needs parenting and promotes the concept that every child ‘blooms’ in his or her own unique way. The blog ( reaches readers in 160 countries and has been picked up by the New York Times, Huffington Post and AOL Online. Louise has a 21-year-old son Ben, who has a rare genetic disorder. She sits on Holland Bloorview’s family advisory.


LOVE Quebec

For the past 20 years, through innovative programs, LOVE - Leave Out Violence strives to end the cycle of violence, one youth, one school and one community at a time. We create a secure environment for youth to express their emotions and opinions to build their self-esteem in order for them to become agents of change. Each year, more than five hundred youths between the ages of 12 and 19 have the opportunity to participate in our programs. They are offered in schools and at our offices on a weekly basis throughout the year. During our programs, LOVE youths acquire knowledge and skills in photography, writing and oral communication, and video creation, which enable them to express their views on the violence that surrounds them: verbal and physical violence, bullying, drug and alcohol abuse, and heinous crimes such as racism, sexism and homophobia.
Pierre G. Couture is the Chief Executive Officer.
Joseph Allen is the Director of Programs and Community Relations.




Gillian Morantz

Gillian Morantz, MD, MPH, is an assistant professor in the McGill Department of Pediatrics. Her clinical work and research are focused on children who are immigrants and refugees, and children in the child protection system. She is the co-Director of the Global Child Health Program at McGill University.


Native Friendship Centre of Montreal

The Native Friendship Centre of Montreal (NFCM) is a non-profit, non-sectarian, autonomous community development agency whose principal mission is to promote, develop, and enhance the quality of life in the urban Aboriginal community of Montreal. The NFCM, being a part of a national initiative that bridges the gap between two cultures, serves the Aboriginal population consisting of the ten First Nations of Quebec, as well as the Inuit and Métis of Montreal. The ten First Nations of Quebec include the Cree, Mi’qmaq, Naskapi, Algonquin, Montagnais, Abenaki, Mohawk, Attikamekw, Huron and Malecite. The Centre mandated to assist Native people who are making a transition to or through the urban community and to improve the quality of life of the urban Aboriginal population of Montreal by providing access to services and referral through central, suitable, and appropriate facilities where cultural, educational, recreational, and social activities can be held. Brett W. Pineau, MBA, is the Executive Director of the NFCM.

Justine Noiseux

Justine Noiseux, MSW, is a clinical social worker in the Trauma and Adolescent Medicine programs at the Montreal Children’s Hospital. She is a Member of the Pediatric Ethics Committee and Child Protection Committee at the Montreal Children’s Hospital; Consultant at Batshaw Youth and Family Centers and the McGill University Center for Research on Children and Families; as well as a member of the OTSTCFQ (Quebec Order of Social Workers).

Margot Nossal

Margot Nossal, MSW, is the Interventions and Sites Coordinator with ACCESS Open Minds/Esprits ouverts, a CIHR-funded research network in the process of developing, implementing, and evaluating an evidence-informed model for transforming youth mental health services across Canada. Previously, she worked as a front-line child welfare social worker in Montreal, and was trained in clinical hospital settings. Margot has participated in various research projects related to child and adolescent development, with a focus on resilience building, family-ecosystemic intervention, and mental health optimization.

Annik Otis

Annik Otis, RN, B.Sc., M.A. Bioethics, is the Clinical Nurse Specialist for the Pediatric Acute Pain Service at the McGill University Health Center, in Montreal. Ethics has been a strong point of interest from the beginning of her career and she has completed a Master’s in Bioethics at the Université de Montréal. After being a member of the clinical pediatric ethics committee for several years, she now continues to participate in activities related to pediatric ethics, including a strong interest in pain management as a pediatric ethical concern.

Le Phare, enfants et familles/The Lighthouse, Children and Families

The Lighthouse, Children and Families is a non-profit organization that contributes to the well-being of children whose lives are threatened by illnesses that require complex treatment, and provides respite and support to their families. Johanne Desrochers, BScN, M.A. Health Administration is the Director General of Le Phare. She is Former Associate Director of  paediatric telehealth for northern Aboriginal communities (implemented by the McGill University Hospital Centre) and Co-Chair of the RUIS McGill telehealth program.

Alison Prendergast

 Alison Prendergast, BSc, BEd, MEd, is a teacher with the English Montreal School Board specializing  in special needs education.  She is currently the teacher of a small classroom of children with emotional and behavioural disorders, focusing on social skills education with the goal of reintegration into typical school settings.  Her other areas of expertise include early literacy development and gender diversity in schools.

Harold Rich

Dr. Rich, MDCM, is an Attending Staff Physician in the Department of Pediatrics and Co‐Chair of the Pediatric Ethics Committee, both at the Montreal Children's Hospital. He is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at McGill University. Dr. Rich is a former physician for children in foster care and under youth protection.

Cécile Rousseau

Dr.  Rousseau, MD, MSc, is a clinical psychiatrist and full professor in the Division of Social and Transcultural Psychiatry in the McGill University Department of Psychiatry. She is also the Scientific Director of the Research Center of the CSSS de la Montagne. She works as a clinician with immigrant and refugee children in multicultural neighborhoods in Montreal, while continuing research on child mental health, school-based prevention programs, and the impact of migration policies.

Mónica Ruiz-Casares

Mónica Ruiz-Casares, BLL, MA, MSc, PhD is an Assistant Professor in the McGill Division of Social and Transcultural Psychiatry and a Scientific Advisor at the Centre de Santé et des Services Sociaux de la Montagne-Institut Universitaire in Montreal, where she evaluates health and social programs for a largely immigrant and refugee population. She leads cross-cultural studies and evaluations related to child wellbeing and protection internationally, mainly in contexts of parent-child separation and lack of supervision. A commitment to involving young people in Global Health Research raises important ethical and methodological issues that her research program engages with. She is currently the principal investigator of a project supporting the participatory development of Visual Informed Consent (VIC) forms with young people in collaboration with Jennifer Thompson, a Doctoral Candidate at the McGill Faculty of Education.

Laura Sky

For the past three decades, Laura Sky has worked as a documentary filmmaker exploring social issues which include the changing role of women, human rights, the voices of children and youth, the needs of families experiencing social exclusion, the politics and economics of the workplace, the experiences of stigma, strength and recovery for people living with mental health difficulties, and the reorganization of health care policy and practices. Laura Sky’s body of work includes more than 30 documentaries. Her most recent works are:  Soldiers’ Children, Working Life, This Film is About Compassion, Recovering Love, the Home Safe series, Extra Ordinary People, Kids Care, Prescription for Addiction, Crisis Call, Working Like Crazy and My Son the Tattoo Artist and To Hurt and to Heal. Many of these films exist in both English and French versions. Her documentaries have also been shown extensively in urban and rural settings across Canada to encourage diverse communities to use documentary film for effective strategic change. Many of her documentaries have won international and community service citations. Laura has lectured extensively and taught documentary production and media ethics throughout Canada, Sweden and Germany. She currently holds the position as Senior Documentarian with the Faculty of Applied Health and Community Studies at Sheridan College in Oakville and Brampton Ontario.

The Students Commission of Canada

The Students Commission was founded in 1991 with a mission to help young people put their ideas for improving themselves, their communities and their world into action. In the year 2000, The Students Commission became the lead of The Centre of Excellence for Youth Engagement, which networks academics, youth organizations and young people together to provide research and training to improve youth programs and youth engagement in Canada. An independent, charitable, non-governmental organization, The Students Commission is active across Canada, supporting young people to participate in the activities of local, provincial, national and international organizations and governments.

Welcome Hall Mission - Children’s Services 

Welcome Hall Mission actively works at reducing poverty, loneliness and despair in Montreal. To combat these persistent problems, Welcome Hall Mission works among the disadvantaged, to provide services to combat hunger, homelessness, addiction, and social exclusion among families and people of all origins, from all social classes and faiths. Welcome Hall Mission’s Children’s Services team accompanies children and teens in their social and personal development through a variety of programs tailored to their needs.
Cyril Morgan is the CEO and Executive Director of the Welcome Hall Mission.
Hans St-Just is the Supervisor of the Children’s Services.

Ina Winkelmann 

Ina Winkelmann, M.A. (Social Work), D.E.S.S., is Coordinator of the Complex Mood Disorders Program & Child, Adolescent and Family Services at the Douglas Mental Health University Institute, Centre intégré universitaire de santé et de services sociaux de l’Ouest-de-l’Île-de-Montréal. She started working as a social worker at the Douglas Institute in 1999 and then from 2007 she acted as middle manager and clinical-administrative chief at the Psychotic disorders admission unit and PEPP. She has been named Coordinator of the Complex Mood Disorders Program & Child, Adolescent and Family Services in the spring of 2015.

Lisa Wolff  

Lisa Wolff is the Director of Policy and Education at UNICEF Canada. Her focus is to promote public policy and practices in Canada that align with the principles and standards of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. This includes working to ensure that governance, budget allocation, services and administrative decisions prioritize children and use the Convention’s broad framework to create the best possible conditions to support all children and youth. UNICEF Canada works across issues and sectors, bringing UNICEF’s global research, data and innovation to domestic efforts for children.



Youth Advisory Council - Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital

Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, in Toronto, is Canada’s largest children’s rehabilitation hospital focused on improving the lives of kids with disabilities. The Youth Advisory Council (YAC) of the Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital is composed of youth between the ages of 16 – 29 who have received services at Holland Bloorview. While providing a sounding board for staff, clients and parents to develop and evaluate Holland Bloorview programs and services, the YAC also offers youth and young adults the opportunity to develop advocacy skills and be involved in helping to create possibilities for younger generations of children with disabilities.





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