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OARTY: a Centre for Excellence in Residential Care and Treatment

Focused on improving standards, accountability and outcomes for children, youth and young adults in care

At the Ontario Association of Residences Treating Youth (OARTY), we believe that every individual that enters residential care and associated residential services should have access to the best services possible and that high quality service providers who are able to achieve positive outcomes should provide these services. That is why we are constantly striving to improve the system and ensure that the children, youth, and young adults in our care have access to services that are evidence informed and based on best practices in residential services.

OARTY was started by a group of private residential service providers in 1971 who envisioned a residential service sector that was focused on best practices, easy to navigate, and constantly improving. The association was incorporated in 1990 and is a registered charity. OARTY has worked hard over the years to form a network of private residential service providers, to advocate on behalf of the sector for improvements in the quality of care and for system change, and to provide high-quality education and services to residential service providers.

OARTY members provide high quality treatment and residential care services to children, youth, and young adults. These service providers have shown their commitment to the sector and to continuous quality improvement by joining OARTY and adhering to our membership standards.

OARTY members provide residential treatment and care to thousands of children, youth, and young adults each year.  Our members support and care for individuals needing temporary, short term, or long term residential care; including those suffering the aftermath of abuse and neglect, requiring 24/7 care due to medical needs, and those with developmental challenges, among others.   OARTY members provide vital support, a place to call home and faces that become family. 
We work to improve policy and practice, as well as hearts and minds. OARTY makes a difference by…

Getting kids supports sooner
Through IRIS (Integrated Residential Information System), the services our members provide can be matched up with those who need it most, assisting Children’s Aid Societies and other organizations that manage the welfare of Ontario’s most vulnerable populations in finding the best possible care for the individual’s needs in an efficient and timely manner.

Working for higher standards and a better system
OARTY is working with government and community partners for higher standards of care, and endorses and supports third-party accreditation (certified, recognized world wide standards for residential care). OARTY members voluntarily agree to adhere to membership standards and are committed to continuous quality improvement.

Conducting valuable research
OARTY conducts research to ensure timely and relevant information on our sector is available. We implemented a system of outcome measurement using evidence-based instruments (outcome evaluation is occurring primarily at the agency level), and maintain a data repository of anonymized clinical information on the clients served by member agencies. OARTY summarizes the results of this data in our Partners in Care (PIC) series of research reports. OARTY members are encouraged to utilize the results of the research to determine best practices and to benchmark their outcomes against others.

Knowledge sharing for improved outcomes
OARTY hosts a highly respected annual conference and regular educational events, the OARTY website is home to a wealth of information for both members and the public, and OARTY keeps its members aware of trends and issues impacting the sector through regular communications.

If you’re interested in our work and the residential care sector we invite you to learn more by signing up to our monthly newsletter.