The First Point of Contact: Getting to Know Tikinagan’s Intake Screeners

A phone call to Tikinagan Child & Family Services is an important first step to ensuring the safety and wellbeing of a child.

“For the child’s larger circle of care, the screening department is the first stage in the Wee-chee-way-win Circle of Care,” said Cora Gregg, a Tikinagan Intake Screener Supervisor in Thunder Bay.

Intake Screeners are situated within the Wee-chee-way-win Circle of Care, a part of Tikinagan’s Mamow Obiki-ahwahsoowin service model, and they act as the entry point to where support and services can begin for children and youth.

Following provincial guidelines, Intake Screeners play an important role at Tikinagan by responding and taking action to protect a child from harm. The first step involves filtering through confidential inquiries and requests and ensuring each referral is sent off to the right people the same day it’s received. Inquiries could include child protection concerns, services for children in care, requests from First Nations, legal requests, and inquiries from other children’s aid societies, agencies, or service providers.

“We’re the first point of contact,” explained Cora Gregg. “We receive the information, and we get it out as soon as possible. We’re here to pass on your information to the right people and ensure every concern is handled by the appropriate individuals with the right knowledge to handle each situation.”

“The Screeners are just the middle person, but also the main contact for the agency,” said Gregg, who adds that the Intake Screeners cannot make any decisions or provide any immediate services.

Gregg said she enjoys her role as an Intake Screener Supervisor because she wants to see children happy and safe.

“I wanted to work for Tikinagan because I have a heart to want to help children and families to grow and flourish in their home communities.”

A passion for working with and supporting children is what drew Leeann Matchiendagos, Intake Screener Supervisor in Sioux Lookout, to take this behind-the-scenes role at Tikinagan.

“Watching them grow and thrive is amazing,” said Matchiendagos.

Matchiendagos, who started as an Intake Screener, added that Tikinagan is a great place to grow your career.

“There’s a lot of opportunity to grow in the agency. Hard work pays off.”

If you have questions related to services or have a child protection concern, you can call Tikinagan 24/7 at 1-800-465-3627. For information related to reporting and your Duty to Report, click here.

To listen to the full interview with Gregg and Matchiendagos, and learn more about Tikinagan’s Intake Unit, watch the video below.