The Family Justice Innovation Lab Society ("FJIL")
The FJIL is composed of a group of dedicated volunteers and staff working together to improve the well-being and resilience of BC families experiencing separation and divorce.
The BC family justice system can increase strain and negatively affect the well-being and resilience of families and their children during and after separation. FJIL is a space for diverse groups of people to take new, family-centred approaches to improve the effectiveness of the court system and the people, organizations and services that support families moving through separation or divorce. FJIL's approach is to start with the families and work with them to co-design potential solutions.
FJIL was incorporated as a BC Society in September 2019.
When parents separate, it is often their children who suffer the most. Even though children are really affected by the decisions made by their parents, they are usually not informed, consulted or invited to take part in the separation or divorce process. Children often feel invisible, disempowered and alone which can lead to mental health and other challenges.
Youth Voices is a youth-led initiative of the FJIL that aims to help young people deal with their parents' separation or divorce. Young people need support and to have their voices heard and respected by their parents and by those involved in the family justice system (lawyers, judges, social workers, police etc.).
The Youth Voices Initiative aims to improve the well-being and resilience of children and youth experiencing parental separation by developing opportunities for them to express themselves in ways that:
- Empower children and youth
- Create a supportive community
- Educate parents and system actors about the importance of listening to children's views
- Influence system-level decision-making
The FJIL recognizes that Youth Voices is simultaneously:
- A collaborative access to justice initiative
- A human rights effort focusing on the rights of the child
- A social movement
- An effort to build community
Youth Voices began in 2017 with a group of young people who had experienced their parents' separation or divorce. They told stories about being caught in the middle of their parents' conflict and having their views discounted or ignored.
Deer Crossing The Art Farm
The Art Farm is a non-profit community engaged arts organization of creative community builders based on the Sunshine Coast, BC, the unceded traditional lands and waters of the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh and shíshálh peoples. The Art Farm believes that creative engagement outside traditional art spaces—on farms or in forests, in hospitals and homes—and across traditional boundaries—between one discipline and another, between audience and artist, between arts and the environment—fosters a stronger sense of belonging for all involved. The more people feel they belong, the more they invest in their community.
This is what we mean by creative community building. We build community creatively by building creative communities.
We envision a world where people of all ages, backgrounds and abilities can engage in creative projects that reconnect us with the land, ourselves, and each other. Our mission is to hold space for the mess of creativity and honour this practice through ceremony and celebration.
We create space—sanctuary—where new voices and ideas can mingle, collaborate and emerge. We amplify and showcase this work and seek avenues to share it with our wider community. We aim to gently shift our audiences from a place of separation and fear to a place of connection and wonder.
We recognize that certain ages, abilities, bodies, genders and people have been systematically excluded from positions of power, authority and voice. We aim to shift this inequity through our collaborations, our work, and our organization.