Award RecipientsBarb Baker2024-02-17T08:59:48-05:00
Cindy McAfee, RSSWThe Barbara Baker Distinguished SSW Merit Recipient (2024)
Cindy McAfee is a graduate of the Georgian College Social Service Worker program and is a registrant with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers and a member with the Ontario Social Service Worker Association. Cindy works with adults and practices psychotherapy for individuals, couples and families. She has extensive experience working with individuals who may be experiencing alcohol and drug addiction, relapse, grief, anxiety, depression, low mood, self-esteem, life transitions, relationship challenges, childhood developmental trauma, and emotional regulation. Cindy uses evidence-based modalities such as Gottman Couples Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Solution Focused Therapy, Mindfulness Based Relapse Prevention (MBRP), Applied Suicide Intervention, and Addictions Counselling. She utilizes interventions derived from Gabor Mate’s “Compassionate Inquiry. Cindy has facilitated groups at Barrie Withdrawal Management Services and facilitates Worthy, an online women’s support group specifically for women who are struggling with negative self-talk, self-doubt, and self-criticism. Cindy is a Gottman 7PP Educator and is trained in Screening for Domestic Violence, Family Mediation, New Ways for Families Mediation, and Certified in Compassion Inquiry. Cindy has a client centered individual approach that is tailored to each client’s specific needs. Cindy’s calm and non-judgmental nature along with her sense of humour serve to put client’s at ease, feel safe, comfortable and ready to do the work they have set out for themselves.
Angel Powers is a distinguished graduate of the Social Service Worker program in 2012, currently pursuing her fourth year in the Honours Bachelor of Counselling and Psychology program, where she has discovered a passion for research and is investigating the perspectives and experiences of healthcare providers who treat first responders. Her professional journey is marked by resilience, self-discovery, and an unwavering commitment to guiding others along their paths to healing. In subsequent years, Ms. Powers zealously committed to daily self-improvement efforts, unveiling pathways to healing that freed her body, mind, and soul from the chains of past traumas. In 2018, she made the pivotal decision to depart from her role in private practice and founded Mainstream Therapy, operating under the legal entity “Angel Powers Social Service Work Professional Corporation.” This endeavour has evolved to include 10 dedicated individuals, comprising social workers, social service workers, and psychotherapists. Beyond being a collective of professionals facilitating healing, they form a closely-knit community sharing a common dedication to personal growth. Among her many pursuits, Angel has a passion to help other aspiring entrepreneurs develop a thriving therapy business model. If a business is built with clean intentions and fosters ethical values, it can positively impact humanity. She fosters a belief in helping to develop, shape, and train the mindset of novice therapists and has written a book sharing her persistence from childhood adversity to thriving in life despite challenges. “From Grit to Grace: My Hard-Knocks Journey from Lost and Vulnerable to Self-Healing and Secure” is scheduled for publication in spring 2024.
Tara Filteau, RSSWThe Community SSW Leadership Citation Recipient (2024)
Stephanie Danso, RSSWThe Black SSW Leadership Citation Recipient (2024)
Stephanie Danso is the founder of the equality seeking Canadian organization, S. Danso Social Service Work Professional Corporation. Her passion as a seasoned social service worker is assisting people in resolving and adjusting to challenges in their daily lives. Totally dedicated to assisting people in finding a healthy balance in their lives, expanding their awareness of who they are in the context of unique circumstances, and contributing to living better lives. With more than fourteen years of experience in counselling, mental health, and wellness, outreach, and education, Stephanie is a Registered Social Service Worker (RSSW). In addition to being a member of the National Anger Management Association and the Ontario Social Service Worker Association, Stephanie is registered as a social service worker with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers. Stephanie has accumulated a great deal of experience working in many contexts and with different age groups throughout the years. Experienced in community development, education, day treatment, and behavioural and therapeutic settings. She has also worked with families, adults, seniors, and teenagers (12–18 years old), offering to promote counselling. She has also facilitated many support groups. Apart from being involved in multiple organisations, Stephanie works as an Ontario College Counsellor, providing mental health support and assistance to students.
Malene Stewart, RSWThe Educator of the Year Award Recipient (2024)
Malene Stewart is a Professor and Program Coordinator in the Faculty of Applied Health and Community Studies where she teaches in the Social Service Worker Program. Malene started her academic career with a two year diploma at Mohawk College. While at the college she researched and aided in the development of the General Arts and Science program proposal and acted as student advisory to the General Arts and Science program. There she ignited her love for academic achievement and success. Malene continued her studies and attended McMaster University where she earned a combined BA in Sociology and a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work. She was presented with the golden key award for academic achievement. She promptly started her career in child protection before returning to McMaster to complete her Masters in Social Work. Malene conducted a qualitative research study looking at the resettlement experiences of refugee women living in the Hamilton area for her Master’s thesis. During her years in child protection, Malene specialized in a domestic violence response team where she collaborated with community partners in the comprehensive case management for the safety of women and children. Malene had the opportunity to present this transformative practice to the Thunder Bay Children’s Aid Society. Other presentations include, “The Effects of Domestic Violence on Children” to the Hamilton- Wentworth District School Board and a presentation to the Martha House Women’s Services on Women Abuse and Child Welfare. She also presented at the Strengthening Hamilton Community Initiative Forum on Racism where she spoke about the history of racism in Canada.
Vic EvangelistaThe Student of the Year Award Recipient (2024)
The association acknowledges that our work occurs on the traditional land of the Anishnaabeg people. The Anishnaabeg include the Odawa, Ojibwe, and Pottawatomi nations, collectively known as the Three Fires Confederacy. The association is dedicated to honouring Indigenous history and culture and committed to moving forward in the spirit of reconciliation and respect with all First Nation, Metis and Inuit people.
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