About Us

Director's Message

 Over the past year everyone at Family Ties, including the staff, the Administrative Council and the members, has shown resilience. When rules changed because of the pandemic, we adapted; when the building was closed due to the renovation project, we packed up our things and held activities elsewhere; when problems arose, we worked as a team. Even though the programs have been dispersed across the town, the staff meets once a week and continues to support each other.

Everyone has been affected by the rise in the cost of living this year and we know that this has caused difficulties for many people. With the price of groceries at an all-time high, Family Ties was happy to be able to help in a small way by applying to the Good Food Access Fund and distributing IGA gift cards to our members. We will also continue to request support towards the cost of transportation for program participants in all of the applications we make to funders.

Increased costs of materials and labor shortages have also affected the Family Ties building project, causing funding shortfalls and a delayed start to the renovations. Thank you for your understanding and also for your support through the GoFundMe page which raised $42,215! Despite the setbacks, I am confident that work will start soon and the finished results will definitely be worth the wait.

I was very happy to participate in the Comité territorial en Développement social for the MRC of Bonaventure, representing Early Childhood and Anglophone families. The committee has developed a plan to identify the needs of our community and define the actions to be implemented to meet these needs. This has resulted in funding for programs throughout the MRC including the following at Family Ties: Destination Family; Born to Read; Nourishing Our Community and a shared gardener with Collectif Aliment-Terre.

Family Ties has also worked with La Table de concertation en sécurité alimentaire Gaspésie-Îles-de-la-Madeleine (TCSAGÎM) to create a bilingual toolbox which gives collective cooking tips, ideas and recipes for coordinators and members, helping to support food security.

As we look forward to the coming year, I am excited to welcome you back into the newly refurbished building and also to invite you to events such as the Family Ties corn boil, where we can get together and reconnect as a community. Some things may have changed, but with change comes adaptation and growth.

“If nothing ever changed, there would be no such things as butterflies.” Wendy Mass

Heather McWhirter


Canadian Heritage projects (ccaf)

Through the Canadian Heritage Community Cultural Action Fund, Family Ties is able to offer cultural activities and workshops in English which deepen the sense of belonging to a vibrant and engaged official language minority community.

Prenatal Sessions

In partnership with the CISSS, the prenatal program offers support to English-speaking women preparing to give birth through the sharing of information and creating links with others. Partners are also welcome.

Baby & Me

(0-12 months + expecting families)

This program invites parents and their babies 0-12 months to come together for mutual support, sharing of information, professional workshops and socializing.

Culture Club

A weekly program for girls and boys aged 5-8 focusing on play, social interaction, learning and experiencing new things. Activities include outdoor play, obstacle courses, science experiments, crafts, cooking and sports. In addition to the many activities Culture Club hosts a monthly family night, bringing siblings and parents for fun events and shared meals.

A program offered twice per year for boys aged 13-17 who graduated from the BUDS program, with a focus on outdoor activities, adventure and physical activity.

Circle of Security is an international program which helps caregivers connect with the children in their lives and is delivered by a qualified facilitator. Through focused discussions, parents reflect upon children’s attachment needs in different situations in order to promote a secure attachment with their own child.

Destination Family

The Destination family program offers support to parents with children aged 0-12 years through individual, family and group interventions and is delivered in partnership with health and social service professionals.

Community Garden

The community garden gives individuals and families access to an expert gardener & garden assistant and an established garden space with the necessary tools to plant, grow and harvest fresh produce, herbs and flowers.

Family Events

Family Ties organizes family events throughout the year which includes activities and healthy food.

· Family Literacy Day
· Family Day at the Chalet
· Teddy Bear Picnic on Canada Day


March Break Activities

Family Ties organized a wide range of activities a range of activities for children and their families over March break in partnership with the Municipality of New Carlisle, New Carlisle High School, CLC New Carlisle and Bright Beginnings.

Library & Access Centre

The Library & Access Centre is open to members who are able to borrow English books. magazines, DVDS and board games free of charge. They also have access to computers, a printer and Wi-Fi.

Born to Read

In Phase 1 of Born to Read infants receive a bag full of books at the time of their first immunization at the CLSC. In Phase 2 four year olds receive a bag of books along with crayons, glue, scissors, pencil, and activity or colouring book at the time of their immunization just before entering school. Family Ties assembles the bags with age appropriate books weaving literacy into the home. New parents also receive a board book entitled “Welcome Baby” by Barbara Reid from the 0-5 nurse at their 24 hour post hospital visit. Additionally, parents have access to a wide variety of resources in the Family Ties library.

Canada Summer jObs

This program provides funding to subsidize wages for people aged 15 and 30, allowing Family Ties to create quality summer work experiences.

New Horizons for Seniors: Growing Wise Together

This program aims to empower seniors while encouraging them to share their knowledge, skills and experience with others in the community.

Dads' Dinners

Dads’ Dinners offers fathers the opportunity to get together in an informal environment to learn cooking skills, which they used to prepare food for their families, and chat about their reality as men and fathers

Munchkin Mansion Playschool

Munchkin Mansion Playschool is a program for children ages 1-5 and their caregivers. Families gather for fun and learning through free play, story time, arts and crafts, singing, healthy snacks and outdoor play. Outings happen on a regular basis to the swimming pool, skating rink, Bioparc and other family-friendly locations.  Parents/caregivers share information and knowledge and learn from early childhood professionals.