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Welcome to the Alberta Family Mediation Society

Our Mission

Alberta Family Mediation Society (AFMS) advocates resolution of family conflict through the use of mediation by qualified professionals.

What is Family Mediation?

Mediation is a family-centered conflict resolution process in which an impartial third party (the mediator) helps the participants in negotiating a consensual, informed and fair agreement. Decision-making rests with the parties throughout. The mediator assists the parties in identifying issues and information needs, reducing obstacles to communication, exploring alternatives and focusing on the needs and interests of those who it is agreed are affected.

What is Parenting Coordination?

The role of a Registered Parenting Coordinator and Arbitrator (RPCA) is to help with communication and cooperation between parents for the purpose of effectively co-parenting their children. An RPCA's role involves meeting with the parents to establish cooperative parenting plans and to assist in dispute resolution using mediation skills. If agreements cannot be made with mediation, the RPCA has decision making authority by means of a binding decision as governed by the Arbitration Act of Alberta. AFMS strongly advises parents to ensure that a Parenting Coordinator is a member of a registered professional body.

Getting Through the Breakup Earthquake

Article by Barbara Jo Fidler, Ph.D., C.Psych., Acc.FM, Parenting Coordination Information for Parents and Lawyers

Article in The Medicine Hat News

Meeting with Children Building skills for Child Specialists, Family Mediators/FDRPs, and Child Consultants
Posted October 25, 2016 4:31PM

Dr Lorri Yasenik and Jon Graham present a new course in Sydney, Calgary and USA, exploring the skills necessary to meet with children and young people involved in the family law and child protection systems.
The Meeting with Children course equips students with the skills to practice as a Child Specialist in Australia and North America.

As with all courses offered by Yasenik-Graham, this course is heavily skills based; students will have the opportunity to practice, reflect, and be coached in the crucial inquiry techniques for Meeting with Children.

Highly experiential, with content developed from local and international practice, the skills taught will add to the practitioner’s tool box, drawing on principles from;
-Child Centred Continuum Model
-Child Development and Attachment
-Play Based Interventions
-Parent Dysregulation; Stress and Trauma

This course is suited to a broad range of family law professionals, including;
-Child Specialists
-FDRPs and Family Mediators
-Parenting Coordinators
-Family Court Report Writers
-Psychologists and Social Workers
-Child and Family Counsellors
-Family Lawyers
-Independent Children’s Lawyers
-Judges and Arbitrators

In addition to a Certificate of Attendance, participants can elect to be assessed against Australian national competencies in Work with a child focus approach (CHCFAM002) and Work within a child inclusive framework (CHCFAM008), receiving a Statement of Attainment (issued by the Uniting Institute of Education RTO # 91739). This assessment is available to participants in both Australia and North America.

Study Two Ways:
*Course with Certificate of attendance only,
no assessments $1,450.00 CAD
*Course with Certificate of attendance and
Statement of Attainment $1,750.00 CAD

Course location:
*Scarboro Community Centre, Calgary, Alberta

The practical nature of this course requires a limited class size.
To find out more, please go to:
or go to the Training tab on this website.

Creating a Culture of Respect for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender People: A Workshop for Family Mediators/Arbitrators/Parenting Coordinators
Posted October 25, 2016 4:28PM

December 6, 2016 – Calgary, AB

This one-day course will enhance previous mediation training and is for those who want to gain practical knowledge and skills that will assist in providing mediation services to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) people. In this interactive and fun session, participants will explore definitions and language to foster inclusive spaces and practices. Participants can expect to engage in a variety of activities that will enhance their ability to provide safe and affirming services for LGBT clients.

Mediators, Arbitrators, Lawyers, Psychologists, Social Workers, Child Welfare Workers, Judges, Coaches, Parenting Coordinators, Teachers and any other professional providing services and education to children/youth/families will find this workshop very informative.

Date: Tuesday, December 6, 2016 from 9am to 4pm

Location: Scarboro Community Hall, 1727 14th Avenue SW, Calgary, AB T3C 0W8 (free parking)

Cost: AFMS members $300, non-members $400


The Honourable Nancy Flatters, B.A., LL.B., LL.M., and C.MED (ADRIC) practiced law from 1982 (as Queen’s Counsel from January 1996) until her July 1996 appointment to the Bench of the Provincial Court of Alberta where she sat in Calgary Family and Youth Court to her retirement in November 2015. Her practice was centred in Family/Civil Law and Youth Criminal Law as well as Mediation/Arbitration/Negotiation/ADR teaching and training for various private/public entities and individuals, including designing and teaching the first course in ADR for the Faculty of Law, University of Calgary (1991). Her LL.M. is specialised in ADR. Both nationally and internationally, she has taught, and continues to teach, in diverse areas of Family/Divorce/Civil Mediation, Family Mediation/Arbitration Parenting Coordination, Judicial Dispute Resolution/Settlement Conferencing Skills, Child Advocacy, and Restorative Justice Mediation in Policing, amongst other areas. With an interest in access to justice, she developed and implemented the first Judicial Dispute Resolution/Settlement Conferencing Program in Family/Child Welfare matters for her Court (1998) and has since created a video to demonstrate Judicial Dispute Resolution and Settlement Conferencing Skills in Child Welfare/Family matters, which incorporates Early Brain and Biological Development in Children 0-5 years and Recovery from Addictions. Her volunteer community service has been and is with various local, provincial, national and international boards and organisations either as a board/committee member/chair/president. Now having returned to teaching and training, she retains her commitment to build bridges in all aspects of her work.

Becky Van Tassel has been employed in the non-profit sector since 2001; she holds Bachelor of Social Work and a Master of Adult Education specializing in Educational Research. During this time she has had the opportunity to work with diverse populations in the areas of counselling, education, community development, and harm reduction. Her efforts have been focused in the areas of addiction, housing, sexual assault, mental health, sexual health, and working with people with developmental disabilities. These prior experiences have allowed her to explore the holistic aspects of sexuality, violence prevention, and sexuality after trauma. From her years of academic and professional experience Becky is adept at creating enjoyable, meaningful, and practical educational sessions for adult learners. As a facilitator Becky is skilled at facilitating difficult topics, discussions, and is able to bring a sense of humour to serious issues. Becky is the Training Centre Manager at the Calgary Sexual Health Centre.

Email Sue at for the registration form or go to the Training page on this website.