Referral Process and Service


Parenting does not happen in isolation of environmental influences.  It is an interaction that occurs between a parent and a child with: unique characteristics, emotional experiences, and is affected by the available knowledge, skills, and resources of a parent/caregiver. The quality and consistency of parenting is influential to a child’s well-being and has its foundation in a positive parent-child relationship. Research has shown that the most critical brain development period for children is immediately after birth and up to three years of age. The most significant individuals in a child’s life are their parents/caregivers.

 CHFC uses a structured approach with families to ensure families receive consistent service across all Collaborative agencies. Home visitation provides parents/caregivers with the knowledge and tools to strengthen their parental capacity. Home visitors teach parenting strategies specifically related to each developmental stage. Home Visitors provide suggestions, information, and interpretations for parents. This is based on their extensive knowledge of best practices in home visitation, their experiences, as well as observations and assessments of the individual family’s needs. The job of home visitation is helping parents to understand child development, creating appropriate expectations of their children and enhancing family functioning.

An integral part of home visitation is shared goal setting with the family. Goal setting is directed by the family in relation to the priority of their needs. In this process it identifies the needs, the source of supports and matches the resources to the identified goals of the family.

Referral Process

Referrals are made directly to the coordinating office of the Collaborative. There are two referral streams that allow families to access home Visitation services provided by CHFC

  1. Alberta Heath Services- Public Health Nurses (PHN) of Calgary region

           Eligible families must meet the following criteria:

    • Have a new born up to three months of age
    •  Screen positive using the Calgary Postpartum Screening Tool , which identifies the number and severity of risk factors experienced by the family; and
    • Live in one of the 50 targeted communities within Calgary identified on the babies of Vulnerability and risk factors, or in one of the nine rural communities which include Airdrie and surrounding areas.  See Service Areas
    •  Indigenous  families are served in any geographical area within the city limits of Calgary

       2. Human Services Child and Family Services Calgary Region

           Eligible families must meet the following criteria:

    • Be involved with Child and Family Services
    • Must live within the City of Calgary or Airdrie
    • Have a child under the age of three years; and
    • Participate in the completion of the Calgary Regional Home Visitation Collaborative Postpartum Screening Tool

Once the CHFC receives the referral a Screener will call the family to set up a visit to explain the Calgary Healthy Families Program. If the family is interested the Screener will administer the Calgary Regional Home Visitation Collaborative Postpartum Screening Tool. If the family scores positive and agrees to the program then the Screener will then connect the family to a Home Visitor.

The Calgary Healthy Families Program is voluntary and the family can say “no” or change their mind at any time about participating in the program.


There is no cost to families who participate in Home Visitation with the Calgary Healthy Families Collaborative.


Home Visitors will visit families in their home (or an agreed location) once a week. On average most families stay in the program for about one year. However, depending on the family's needs some families stay open longer and some close sooner.