Acting Manitoba Advocate

Ainsley originally joined MACY in 2009, as a Special Investigator on the child death review unit where she blended research and writing skills to advocate for changes to public systems that could improve service delivery to families and prevent future deaths of children. From there, Ainsley went on to create and develop MACY’s communications and research department, successfully building and amplifying the voice of the office, and running public outreach and education campaigns to increase awareness of the work of the Advocate. This included partnering with the Canadian Mental Health Association in the creation of Thrival Kits™. In spring 2017, Ainsley was appointed Deputy Manitoba Advocate, helping to organize and oversee ongoing initiatives as well as the significant changes to the Advocate’s expanded mandate under new legislation. In January 2021, Ainsley was appointed Acting Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth.

Prior to returning to Winnipeg to join MACY, Ainsley spent ten years on the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia as a direct service youth worker and alternative education program developer. She holds an MA in Communication, with a specialization in international and intercultural communications, and is a registered social worker with the Manitoba College of Social Workers. Ainsley’s work focuses on children’s rights education and finding creative ways to amplify the voices of young people.

When not at work, Ainsley is surrounded by home and family, with her fingers deep in the dirt of her garden, or happily grilling at her backyard BBQ. Ainsley notes one of her biggest joys in life is spending time with her 13-year-old daughter, who is one of the more hilarious little humans on the planet. Together, they are trying to teach their new puppy old tricks.

Daphne Penrose, MSW, RSW

On Leave

Sworn in as the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth on April 12, 2017, Daphne has extensive experience that spans three decades working inside the child welfare system. She holds a Masters degree in social work and is a registered social worker in the province.

Daphne started her career as a juvenile counsellor in the youth justice system, holding positions at Agassiz Youth Centre as well as the Manitoba Youth Centre. Since then Daphne has held nearly every job within the child welfare system: front line worker, abuse worker, unit supervisor, then head of quality assurance for the Child Protection Branch, and other senior executive positions, including as acting Chief Executive Officer at Winnipeg Child and Family Services.

Beyond titles, degrees, and designations, Daphne has had a lifelong commitment to working collaboratively with families and communities. She is committed to listening to the voices of families and extended families to design and deliver services to children and youth, which reflect the wisdom and expertise of the natural supports that surround each child.

Accountability of public systems is of vital importance to Daphne, and she brings her wealth of experience in quality assurance and accountability to her role as the Manitoba Advocate.

Originally from Dauphin, Daphne’s family still owns a cabin at Dauphin Lake, where she enjoys time with family. Daphne has two sons and they remind her every day about the importance of being a strong voice for children. She is motivated by children and families and is committed to seeing positive changes for all children. She is also a movie lover, and while action, sci-fi, and drama are her genres of choice, she also happily admits to being among the biggest Harry Potter fans around.