The Children’s Aid Society (C.A.S.) of the District of Nipissing was formed in 1907. It was incorporated as a private corporation without share capital in 1941. CAS Nipissing functioned as a one-dimensional agency under the terms of the legislation of the day, up until the establishment of the Child and Family Services Act (C.F.S.A.) in 1984. The single purpose of the Society to that point was providing child welfare and delivering services related to that function. Under the broader mandate of the C.F.S.A., it enabled the Society to deliver other programs beyond the Child Welfare mandate. The Society has, over the past decade, been committed to establishing and delivering services which contribute to the well being of children and families.
In the District of Parry Sound, there were two Children’s Aid Societies from 1909 on, one in East and one in West Parry Sound. An Order in Council dated October 5, 1909 established the Society under the name of the Children’s Aid Society of West Parry Sound. In East Parry Sound, the office was in Burk’s Falls. At first, the Society’s work was concentrated just in the towns and it was only in 1920 that any service was provided in areas such as Restoule, Golden Valley, Lorning and Arnstein.
In 1931, the West Parry Sound Children’s Aid Shelter was located on Miller Street and Mrs. Carr, the Matron, received 85 cents per child per day. On average there were 16 children in the Shelter and they baked their own bread, grew vegetables, and milked their own cow. By 1938 there were 144 children in care and a new secretary and assistant were hired.
In the mid 1930’s, the East and West Parry Sound Societies started to discuss amalgamation. In 1937, only twenty percent of the work of both Societies was in the town of Parry Sound and the surrounding municipalities, while eighty percent was in the East side. It was in this year that the two Societies amalgamated and the Society moved into its own offices in Parry Sound in November, 1994.
The notion of an amalgamation of the Nipissing and Parry Sound Societies evolved as a result of an informal conversation between the Executive Directors of the two Societies in September of 1996. In January 1998 the Boards passed an identical motion agreeing to amalgamate the two Societies. On March 25, 1998 (Parry Sound CAS membership) and March 26, 1998 (Nipissing CAS membership) the amalgamation was endorsed and the Boards were charged with its implementation.
In 1985 the Children’s Aid Society in Nipissing established permanent quarters by building its present head office at 433 McIntyre Street West in North Bay. The Society and its Board of Directors now deliver services in Child Welfare, Child Development, Young Offenders, and Early Intervention areas. The Society, in 1995, established a new Mission Statement to reflect its broadened role in providing service to the community. The Society has an active Board of Directors, a strong professional staff, committed foster parents, and relies extensively on volunteers to achieve its mission.