Saskatchewan

Saskatchewan expands program to help families through divorce

A program to help families through divorce is being expanded across Saskatchewan.

Family Matters aims to provide inexpensive, informal help as couples separate

There's less stigma attached to reaching out for help with parenting, says Dr. Rhonda Matters. (auremar/Shutterstock)

A program to help families through divorce is being expanded across Saskatchewan.

The Family Matters program offers information to couples who are separating. Robbi Behr with the province's justice ministry said it helps them work through some of the issues — from custody to financial support.

"We have a check list for property division. We've just developed a document — how to tell your children," Behr said. "So it's all over the board. And we've had 83 problem-solving sessions so far."

In particular, the program is supposed to minimize some of the effect of divorce on children by helping parents work things out informally, if possible.

Behr said she's pleased the program is now being expanded across the province.

"We're hoping that this becomes a process that isn't damaging to children and the adults," Behr said. "At the end of it they can look back and go, 'I feel good about how I handled that and my children are better for that.' "

It was launched as a pilot project in November 2014 with $1.3 million from the Law Foundation of Saskatchewan.

For nearly two years, it has been available in the province's four biggest cities — Saskatoon, Regina, Moose Jaw and Prince Albert.

Corrections

  • This story originally said the Family Matters program was launched as a pilot project with money from the Law Society of Saskatchewan. In fact, it was the Law Foundation of Saskatchewan.
    Jun 17, 2016 12:14 PM CT