The Power of Parenting

Wednesday, 11 February 2021

Fact Sheet

Fact Sheet

Learn more about our mission, core beliefs and current initiatives that help us reach parents and professionals across Canada.
Download our Fact Sheet.

Fact Sheet: About Invest in Kids (PDF)


Who We Are

Invest in Kids is a national charitable organization dedicated to ensuring the healthy social, emotional and intellectual development of children from birth to age five.

Invest in Kids was born in 1993 when a group of volunteers came together to make a positive change in the world. Many of those volunteers were parents, and some of them had also worked in the field of child abuse prevention—so they were very familiar with the need for more positive parenting to raise healthy, well-balanced children. Together, they founded Invest in Kids.

Led by a Board of Directors chaired by K. Michael Edwards, we now have a staff of over thirty in four offices across the country. We have experts in early childhood development, parenting, research and communications. We are also guided by a Board of National Advisors comprised of recognized experts in child development.

Our Mission

Invest in Kids helps parents become the parents they want and need to be. By translating the science of parenting and child development into engaging, easy-to-understand, relevant resources for parents and professionals, we strengthen the parenting knowledge, skills and confidence of all those who touch the lives of our youngest children to ensure the healthy social, emotional and intellectual development of children from birth to age five.

Our Operating Principles


  • Have a national scope,
  • Make a lasting difference in the lives of Canada’s children,
  • Identify and support best practices without reinventing the wheel,
  • Maximize resources by working in strategic alliances across public, private and not-for-profit sectors, and
  • Leverage spending to multiply impact and monitor and measure results.
What We Believe

Research tells us that parents believe that being a parent is the most important thing they will ever do. It also tells us that parents feel unsupported and vulnerable in their role as parents. Parents want to do a wonderful job – they simply do not have the knowledge, skills and confidence to do it well.

We know that the first five years of a child’s life are critical. We believe that if parents had access to appropriate resources to guide them, to build their knowledge, skills and confidence, their experience as parents would be enhanced, and the positive developmental outcomes for their children heightened.

We have created these resources based on a framework called Comfort, Play & Teach: A Positive Approach to Parenting.™ These resources support a young child’s healthy social, emotional and intellectual development. Engaging and easy-to-understand, they are used in the everyday moments parents spend with their children, capturing the unique opportunities to engage in positive parenting experiences. By comforting, playing with and teaching their young children every day, parents adopt a new way of parenting and ultimately create a better future for their child.

Why 0-5

The years before five last the rest of their lives.™ Research shows these years are critical in developing a child’s ability to learn and grow physically, socially and emotionally.

What We Do

Reaching Parents

Here are a few of our critical initiatives for both parents and professionals:

Web Site: Our site, which debuted in November 2002, draws more than 100,000 visitors monthly. It features comprehensive information on how young children grow and develop, activities to guide development and practical parenting tips.

Welcome to Parenting Box: This box, funded by the Unilever Canada Foundation, is packed with practical materials parents can use to encourage their baby’s healthy development.

Get Set For Life: This public education campaign and stage tour brings the positive parenting message to the Canadian public thanks to our partners at CBC Television, Canadian Living and Coup de pouce.

The First Five Years Resource Kit: This simple 24-page book, funded by Capital One, provides information to help parents understand and support their child’s development through those critical first five years.

Infant Growth Chart: Sponsored by Sun Life Financial, this detailed fold-out chart helps parents track and understand their child’s development in the first year of life.

Comfort, Play & Teach Centre™: Launched in 2006 during the Get Ser For Life Tour, this movable physical environment is a play area where the principles of the Comfort, Play & Teach: A Positive Approach to Parenting™ come to life for both parents and children. By participating in activities together in the Sculpture, Reading, Imaginative Play and Creative activity zones of the Centre, children have fun and parents experience how simple, everyday moments can be used to support their child’s healthy social, emotional and intellectual development.

Comfort, Play & Teach™ Community Room Program: This program, launched in partnership with Atlantic Superstore, features interactive sessions for parents and their children, aged 18 months to 5 years, supporting their children’s readiness to learn.

Positive Parenting Public Education Campaign: Launched in 2006, the campaign features posters as well as a series of public service announcements, produced in partnership with CBC, by prominent Canadians who support the importance of positive parenting.

The Imagination Library: Launched in November 2006 in partnership with The Dollywood Foundation, this program supports children’s language and literacy skills and prepares them for school by gifting every newborn registered with the Library with a free age-appropriate book a month until the child’s fifth birthday. It helps parents build a positive parent-child relationship through rich sensory exchange as they start reading to their child from early on. The program is open to all communities across the country that can secure the funding for registration of children in their area and the purchase and mailing of books.

Reaching Professionals

Professional Education: We deliver high-quality training and education programs in the areas of child development and parenting. The numerous programs we offer reach a range of professionals across Canada including public health nurses, physicians, family home visitors, early childhood educators, social workers and children’s mental health professionals.

Web Site: Our site is a workbench and meeting place for all professionals working with young children and their families. It provides up-to-date information about early childhood development and parenting, discussion forums, subject-specific chats, Answers for Professionals and customized handouts. It is also a portal for ongoing support for all professionals trained in Invest in Kids’ Training Institutes.

Our Research

The Parenting Partnership: This project, which is developing and testing an innovative two and a half year parent education program, aims to transform the way we educate first-time parents on raising healthy children. In 2007, we are embarking on a full-scale pilot of the program. For additional information, please visit

Community Vitality: Through a research grant from the Unilever Canada Foundation, Invest in Kids is conducting research that will identify:

  • what is currently known about how communities can support parents of young children;
  • how parents feel about the tangible support (e.g., materials, services, programs and information), and intangible support (e.g., social and peer relations, community and cultural attitudes and values) they experience and desire; and
  • how the support parents actually experience relates to their parenting skills and their children’s development.

A National Survey of Parents of Young Children: Our bilingual survey of 1,643 Canadian parents with children under 6 years, published in April 2002, helped determine their knowledge, confidence, feelings and skills as new parents.

Our Funding

Funding is provided largely by the corporate sector through special events, program sponsorships and donations as well as by foundations and individuals.

Our Partners

Our work was made possible thanks to the generous support of Atlantic Wholesalers Ltd., Barrick Gold Corporation, Bell Canada, BMO Financial Group, Canadian Living, Capital Guardian, Capital One, CBC Television, CIBC World Markets Children’s Miracle Foundation, Cornerstone 52 Foundation, Coup de pouce, Ernst & Young LLP, Due North Communications, Fidelity Investments Canada, Fraser Milner Casgrain LLP, Rogers, Russell Investment Group, Scotiabank Group, Sun Life Financial Inc., Scholastic, TD Securities – A Member of TD Bank Financial Group, Sim & McBurney, Scott Paper Ltd., The Lawson Foundation and Unilever Canada Foundation.

Contact Invest in Kids

Head Office
425 Adelaide St. West, 6th Fl.
Toronto, ON M5V 3C1
Tel.: (416) 977-1222
1-877-583-KIDS (5437)
Fax: 416-977-9655
[email protected]


Alberta Regional Office
Lovette Ferguson
Tel.: (780) 481-3451
[email protected]

British Columbia Regional Office
Valerie Fichtner
Provincial Coordinator
Tel.: (250) 763-0456 [email protected]

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