Family and Children’s Services Niagara will deliver a special gift of flowers to thank all their dedicated volunteers and foster parents. – Nick Fearns/Torstar

Family and Children’s Services Niagara wanted to show their appreciation for all the great work done by volunteers and foster families

NEWS 05:00 AM by Nick Fearns
Family and Children’s Services Niagara (FACS) are showing their thanks through flowers. This week, all of the foster families and volunteers will receive a special delivery from FACS, thanks to a generous donation from Sunrise Greenhouses in Vineland.April 19 to 25 is National Volunteer Week and the group wanted to thank all the dedicated volunteers and foster parents who were unable to meet for their annual “Celebration of Caring” recognition event.

Unfortunately, the celebration event was cancelled. FACS is offering flowers to the foster families and volunteers to show a big thank-you.

FACS is supported by 211 volunteers who provide a variety of services, giving more than 61,000 hours each year.

Some act as tutors, others mentor children and youth — providing a shoulder to lean on and special outings to look forward to.

Family and Children’s Services Niagara staff and directors got together to give a big thank-you to the volunteers and foster parents. – Nick Fearns/Torstar

FACS’ volunteer drive program sees volunteers cover 2.2 million kilometres each year getting children, youth and families to important appointments and visits.

“In addition to our volunteers, we also want to recognize our foster parents at this time. Many of them are caring for several children in care, as well as their own children. That’s quite a challenge at the best of times,” said Michelle Bernard, FACS’ Director of Volunteer and Foster Care Services.

There are currently 150 foster families in Niagara, caring for 446 children and youth in care.

The local child welfare agency has never been more thankful to those who give of their time and talents to help them in their important work with children, youth and families in Niagara.

“Our volunteers and foster parents are truly extraordinary people, and are crucial to the work that we do,” said Anna Bozza, FACS’ executive director. “I don’t know what we would do without them.”

“Although we are not able to come together for our annual Celebration of Caring event to celebrate and thank our foster parents and volunteers during Volunteer Appreciation week, we want them to know that they are in our hearts and minds at this challenging time,” she added.

Bozza said signs thanking the volunteers would be placed in the windows of their building facing the highway.

Flowers and a special card will be delivered to their homes by FACS’ staff. In addition to the flowers, FACS will also be using email and social media to express their appreciation and admiration.

“We know these are small tokens of appreciation,” concluded Bozza. “We are thankful for our volunteers and our foster parents every single day, and we want them to know just how much.”

“Our hearts go out to you,” she said.

For more information about Family and Children’s Services Niagara or their volunteer and foster family program, please call 905-937-7731 or visit