Peer Support Provider

The Peer Support Program is an initiative designed to provide support to kinship & foster parents by kinship & foster parents. These network-trained kinship & foster parents are referred to as Peer Support Providers.
Peer Support Providers have first-hand knowledge of the increasingly complex challenges to providing care to children and they have been trained in ways to provide assistance in a knowledgeable and healthy manner. They give emotional and social support to empower kinship & foster parents and the children to whom they provide care. At the same time they are helping to support a strong and cooperative working relationship between kinship & foster parents and agencies.

KFFNM believes that an organized and comprehensive support system is critical to assisting all foster families fulfill their role as caregivers.


Karen Beaudin
Karen has been a foster parent for 18 years and has many connections in the fostering community. Through formal education, professional development opportunities and networking in the community, Karen has knowledge of resources available for families and children and is willing to help out whenever there is an opportunity.

Vinnie Wiens
Vinnie lives in Kleefeld with her husband Fred. They have been fostering in the south-east area of the province for 13 years. These years of fostering have given her experience in many different areas like FASD, ODD, Autism, attachment, but not limited to this.

Sandy Smith
Sandy and her husband live in Steep Rock and have been fostering for the last 17 years. They foster in a specialized foster home setting. This is the second time she is serving on the Peer Support line, having just returned after a break and tells us she is enjoying interacting with other foster parents. Sandy places great value in the information that other foster parents have to share to make our lives easier.

Lisa Desharnais

Lisa has lived around Ile des Chenes area for the last 23 years, has 3 bio children and 3 foster children.  Lisa has been a foster parent for 8 years and lives for theses little ones.  Lisa has attended courses in Autism, FASD, Communication, Relational Attachment and many others.  Lisa enjoys using her knowledge and experience to connect with people through the Peer Support line.

Kim Sowa-Kozody

Kim is Currently working fulltime as a treatment co-ordinator in a dental office where she started as a dental assistant and worked up to treatment co-ordinator 2005 to current. Kim is also a foster parent and respite provider for over 20 years with a passion for children & families. She is keen on learning, developing and sharing new skills and that is how she became part of the KFFNM. Kim is looking forward to continued learning , sharing and supporting kinship and foster parents for years to come.

Michelle Bruneau

Michelle has been living in Thompson for almost nine years. She is in love with the north. It is a beautiful place. Before moving to Thompson she lived in Powerview, Mb. She owned a fabric and Craft shop called Powerview Fabrics. She loves all things crafty. She is also a certified florist. She has been a foster parent to a sweet boy of six for a year. Her daughter had him since he was born but due to health issues she could not continue to be a foster parent. She gladly jumped at the chance to foster. She is learning so much about fostering and how to care for children with special needs. She is happy and excited to have joined the Peer Support Line.

Michelle Ans

Michelle is currently a licensed foster parent for 2 boys. She lives in Beausejour, Mb and I also cares for her 16 year old bio-son with special needs.
Since 2005 she has been employed as an Education Assistant with the a Manitoba School Division.
In 2018  Michelle was  asked me to join the KFFNM Peer Support Program and accepted. From July – September 2018 Michelle began her Peer Support training and then officially began taking calls in October 2018. Michelle is really enjoying this experience as a provider and, looks forward to helping other caregivers as a KFFNM Peer Support Provider.