September 2016

As newly-elected President of the Block Parent® Program of Winnipeg, Inc. I am excited to join the Board as we strive to engage the public in the area of community safety. I have been a Block Parent® volunteer for 25 years, a School Chairperson for 8 years, a volunteer with several non-profit organizations throughout my life, and a volunteer with the Neighbourhood Watch program for 20 years. I take community safety very seriously, as do most Winnipeggers.

Over the last few months, I have had the pleasure of volunteering at a few of our Block Parent® information tables: the Teddy Bear's Picnic at Assiniboine Park, Champlain School on Church Avenue, École Julie-Riel School in south Winnipeg, and the West Broadway Community Centre. The recurring question is always, "Are Block Parents still around?" I answer with a resounding, "We sure are." Today's Block Parent® Program has the participation of over 1,000 families in over 180 elementary schools throughout the city of Winnipeg.

Since 1975, the program's goal has been to ensure 'safe homes with safe strangers'. To that end, every adult in a Block Parent® home is background-checked by the Winnipeg Police Service and a Child Abuse Registry check every two years, at no cost to the volunteers. Although the Program focuses on the safety of children, there are also incidents on record of Block Parents assisting teens and seniors.

People may believe that if they can't post a Block Parent® sign all day long, there's no use joining. However, the point is to offer assistance whenever you are able. Even though our own three children are grown, I still post the Block Parent® sign in the window when we are home. And you don't have to have children to join. Many volunteers simply feel strongly about community safety. They dedicate their time as the eyes and ears of our neighbourhoods.

If you are interested in becoming a Block Parent®, please call 204-284-7562. Volunteer and general safety information is available at, and by visiting our Facebook page at

I wish to offer many thanks to George Jarvis, for his volunteering as the President of Block Parent® Program of Winnipeg, Inc. for the past 18 years. Have no fear - George is still very involved with the Program in other capacities. After all, volunteers never really stop - they simply find other ways to help. I encourage all homeowners to participate in the Block Parent® Program - one of the few jobs you can do from your couch!

Yours truly,

Wanda Prychitko
President, Block Parents Program of Winnipeg