AFKA Governance

A Voice For Alberta’s Foster and Kinship Caregivers

Advocacy at the forefront for Alberta’s foster and kinship caregivers. Our devoted team delves deep into the intricacies of policies and procedures to champion your needs and ensure you’re heard.

Strong Leadership, Transparent Governance

AFKA is committed to helping you navigate the complexities of foster and kinship care. Because the needs and challenges of each child and family are unique, it’s hard to create policies that best support everyone. AFKA focuses on leadership and governance to push for clarity and fairness in the system.

foster parent holding child on his shoulders smiling
2023-2025 Strategic Plan

A Vision For The Future

Programs, Services & Support

We are committed to building programs, services and support that meet the ever-evolving needs of our communities. 

We want our programs to be genuinely helpful and supportive, focusing on creating connections between caregivers and additional support they may need.


We are a strong voice for caregivers, raising profile and awareness of AFKA and its work so that we can support more people. We aim to empower caregivers to self-advocate, knowing they can lean on us anytime. 

AFKA connects individual caregivers and the foster and kinship community with internal and external partners, resources, and any additional support that improves the lives of caregivers and the children they care for.


AFKA is deeply committed to being lifelong learners about Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility.

AFKA supports any Children’s Services licensed/approved foster, kinship and adoptive parent without judgment and works to be an ally for all Alberta foster and kinship caregivers.

Growth & Innovation

We continue to dedicate time and attention to improving operations as we grow. We strive for optimal efficiency, ensuring Alberta families benefit from streamlined programs and accessible support.

We refuse to be stuck in old patterns. Embracing the evolving world, we champion innovative programs that extend our support to even the most underserved regions of Alberta.

Excellence. Transparency. Accountability. This is our commitment.

At AFKA, we recognize the significance of our mission and operate with a commitment to excellence, transparency, and accountability. Our province’s remarkable foster and kinship families deserve nothing less than an organization that champions their cause with unwavering dedication.

Here is what you can expect from us:


We are proud of our programs, how we manage our budget, and the relationships we have built with policymakers. We run our organization with openness and transparency.


We remain accountable to our Board of Directors to ensure that every decision we make is in the best interest of Alberta’s foster and kinship caregivers.

Operational Excellence

We always seek ways to refine our processes and enhance our programs and services. We know it’s essential to be innovative and always learning.

Fiscal Responsibility

We are committed to managing our finances responsibly and with integrity. We want to maximize every dollar to benefit Alberta’s foster and kinship caregivers and the children they are raising.

foster parents sitting with child on bench outdoors

Making a Difference in the Lives of Alberta’s Caregivers

Key governance documents, such as our bylaws, policies and annual reports, are available here and are updated regularly. If you have questions about these documents, please email the AFKA team at
Bylaws and Policies
Board Of Directors

Meet The Board

Rene Rajotte

AFKA President

Carmen Legge

AFKA Vice-President

Monique McCardle

AFKA Director, Calgary Region

Danielle Gouchie

AFKA Director, Central Region

Shauna Baxter

Acting AFKA Director, Edmonton Region

Bev Towe

AFKA Director, North Region

Terri Forseille

AFKA Associate Director, North Region – West Zone

Jean Parker

AFKA Director, South Region


AFKA Director, Treaty 6


AFKA Director, Treaty 7

Carly Morton

AFKA Director, Treaty 8

Sylvia Thompson

AFKA PAST President

Bernadine Grant

AFKA Director, Métis

Chad Krahn

AFKA Director, Advocacy

Join the Board

Are you interested in getting involved?


Treaty 6
Treaty 7


Members of the AFKA Board must be either an AFKA Foster, Kinship or Lifetime Member.

Details on becoming an AFKA Foster or Kinship Caregiver Member can be found on our membership page.

If you are interested in filling one of these vacancies, please contact:

Melissa Jones, Chief Executive Officer


Phone: 780-701-4090

Upcoming AFKA Board Meetings

AFKA holds regular Board meetings, and the Board also meets regularly with the Presidents of the Local and Regional Associations. Upcoming meeting dates are available below. 

If you have an item you would like brought forward at any of these meetings, please contact your AFKA Regional Board representative or Regional/Local Association President.

Upcoming AFKA Board Meetings:

January 17, 2024 (Virtual) –  1:00pm-3:30pm

April 25, 2024 (In-person, Edmonton, AB) – 12:30pm-3:30pm

Upcoming AFKA Board and President’s Meetings:

January 18, 2024 – 9:00am-11:00am

April 26, 2024 – 9:30am-11:30am

*Meeting dates and locations are subject to change*

Regional and Local Associations

Local groups consist of foster and kinship caregivers. Each group has its elected leaders, conducts regular gatherings, and nominates a spokesperson for Regional Council discussions. We also welcome caregivers to these Regional Council sessions.

The contributions of these local groups are essential for the overall success of the provincial association. AFKA counts on feedback from caregivers throughout Alberta to guide our decisions and develop supportive offerings. Local concerns are first shared with the Regional Council. If they aren’t resolved there, they’re raised with AFKA. By empowering these local groups, we amplify the voice of foster and kinship caregivers, ensuring the best for the children they look after.

Local groups play a crucial role in supporting caregivers. Even in remote areas, caregivers can form small groups to exchange updates, offer mutual support, share innovative ideas, and facilitate training opportunities.

For information on becoming involved and having your voice heard, contact your local association president for information on upcoming meetings. If there is no active association in your community or area, and you are interested in starting one, please contact us for more information!

Local Association Presidents

Get Involved Locally

Nicole Bull

President, Calgary FPA

Betty Dyck

Camrose Association of Caregivers

Amanda Scott

President, Red Deer FPA

Jana Treen

President, Wainwright/Lloydminster FPA

Sammantha Reinhardt

President, Mountainview Caregivers Association

Joanne Crowley

Capital Region Caregiver Council

Andrea Kolodychuk

President, Northwest Council for Children in Care

Terri Forseille

President, High Prairie FPA

Ronalda Wolfe

President, High Level Foster Parent Association

Dawn Buhler

President, Grand Prairie FPA

Sammantha Reinhardt

President, Central Alberta Caregiver Council

Stephanie French

President, North Central Regional Council

Rene Rajotte

AFKA President

Rene hails from the east side of the central region and fostered for 29 years. He has sat on other boards in his community for many years and says that he enjoys working with people, tries to be open-minded and listens to what people have to say.

He and his wife Carol have retired from fostering in the past few years and have many great memories, as well as some sad ones. Rene believes one of the most rewarding things about fostering is being part of making a positive difference in a child’s life. Rene has sat on the AFKA board for a number of years, and has recently taken on the role of AFKA President.

Rene says what he enjoys most about being on the board is talking to many different Foster and Kinship caregivers, taking their concerns to the board and to other stake holders, working toward positive change

Carmen Legge

AFKA Vice President

Carmen has been a foster parent for 15 years in the Calgary region where she has experienced many of the joys and frustrations that only a fellow caregiver can understand. 

Carmen is excited to help grow programs that support, recognize, and appreciate caregivers as they cope with the challenges experienced by foster and kinship families across Alberta. 

Carmen is a parent to six kids and works as a registered social worker within a health care setting.  She is an advocate for policies that support caregivers, are consistently implemented, and are easily accessible; so that caregivers know what to expect and where to look to get answers to their questions. 

In 2021, Carmen completed her Master of Social Work with a specialization in trauma-informed clinical practice.  She brings her passion, experience, and education to her role as vice president on the AFKA board.

Monique McCardle

AFKA Board Director, Calgary Region

Monique, along with her husband have 11 exceptional forever children and have had the privilege of caring for over 20 children since becoming foster parents in 2011.

Monique has actively served the Calgary Foster Parent Association for the past eight years, contributing her time and expertise in various capacities before assuming her current role as Executive Director of the CFPA.

Her dedication to the association reflects her commitment to advocating and supporting the families who open their hearts and homes to children in care.

Danielle Gouchie

AFKA Board Director, Central Region

Danielle has been a foster parent for 14 years. The first 8 of those years as a foster parent in a small rural community in South region. Currently Danielle is a foster parent in Central Region.

She joined the board in October 2022 to advocate on behalf of caregivers. She believes that all caregivers deserve respect and to have their voices heard and that all caregivers are an integral part of the child services team.

Shauna Baxter

AFKA Acting Board Director, Edmonton Region

Shauna is an experienced foster caregiver and adoptive parent (14 years) with a demonstrated history of working in the individual and family services industry since 1990.

She is skilled in trauma-informed care, early intervention, advocacy, and understanding neurodiverse and underrepresented populations. Shauna is a strong professional who graduated from Red Deer College in Disability Studies and continues to have a yearning for building on her foundational knowledge.

Her belief that her advocacy, lived experience, respect for Indigenous rights and passion for navigating difficult scenarios propels her to be present and active as the Edmonton Region Acting Director.

One of Shauna’s many achievements has been connecting and mentoring families who have post-adoption struggles with their adopted child with extreme and complex mental heath needs. Shauna truly wants to help be the voice of change… hand in hand with her fellow caregivers who show up and give 10000% daily.

Bev Towe

AFKA Board Director, North Region

Bev Towe has been a part of the AFKA collectively for 9 years. She is a strong advocate for caregivers and children and is excited to continue this role for her region. Bev has been a Foster Parent for 27 years, she has obtained private guardianship for three of the children she cared for.

Bev has also been a part of numerous Boards and committees within her community. Bev hopes to ensure positive outcomes and changes for all members of the AFKA.

Terri Forseille

AFKA Associate Board Director, North Region – West Zone

Bio is coming!

Jean Parker

AFKA Board Director, South Region

Jean has been a foster parent in Pincher Creek for thirteen years. She and her husband Gary have cared for fifteen children since their home opened and have become a permanent family to five.

Jean has a Bachelor of Commerce Degree with a minor in Sociology from the University of Calgary and is currently working on a second degree in Psychology at Athabasca University.

Jean and Gary operate a day home and have extensive experience with children with special needs. Jean enjoys learning, painting and other crafts. She loves animals and has four dogs, a parrot and two bunnies at home.

Jean is passionate about making change and she joined the AFKA Board to help Southern Alberta foster and kinship caregivers have a voice. She is a great listener and advocate and is excited to get to know caregivers in the south region. 

Carly Morton

AFKA Board Director, Treaty 8

Carly Morton is the Director for Treaty 8 territory; she is also a member of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation. Carly is the mother of 4 children, one kinship.

Being a kinship mother is what drew her to becoming part of the Alberta Foster and Kinship Association. As a Dene woman, she did not see or hear a voice for First Nation Kinship and Foster parents and wanted to help.

Over the past 4 years she has been able to pass along successes and challenges for First Nations families. Carly looks forward to assisting in the future.

Marci Cho – Thank you

Sylvia Thompson

AFKA PAST President

Sylvia has been President of the AFKA’s Board of Directors for the past 4 years, now enjoying her important position as Past President. She brings a wealth of knowledge to her role having been on the Board for over 20 years in various capacities, and from her 32 years of fostering before retiring!

She, with her husband Bob, has fostered over 165 kids in that time, some of whom she is still in contact with. Sylvia has 5 grandchildren and 2 great-grandchildren who she loves spending time with, making retirement very busy!

Bernadine Grant

AFKA Board Director, Metis

Bernadine Grant comes from a family of Metis Sixties Scoop Survivors, day home survivors and residential school survivors.

In 2000, she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Alberta, and in 2011 she gained a Master of Business Administration from Athabasca University.

The beginning of her career started in Indigenous Health Promotions, Indigenous health research and advocacy for Indigenous Peoples under federal policies. Today, Bernadine is a foster parent who aims to make a difference in the lives of children in care.

She is a strong believer in working for what is best for the child and understands that family comes in all shapes and sizes.

Chad Krahn

AFKA Board Director, Advocacy

Chad Krahn, is a husband, father of five, including two foster children. Alongside his wife Heather, Chad has been fostering for seven years, seeing the good, the bad and the ugly of the system.

Chad was elected to as a City Councilor for the City of Red Deer on April 22, 2024. He has a background in politics, community building, and poverty reduction, Chad is driven by a profound passion for advocacy.

He also serves as a board member of the Alberta Foster and Kinship Association (AFKA), where he lends his expertise to enhance political advocacy for the benefit of foster parents.

With a keen understanding of foster parenting dynamics and understanding of government, Chad is excited to make enduring contributions to both his local community and the broader political landscape.