Family Mediation Training (2023)

Familymediationcan be a rewarding career from many standpoints: professional, emotional, and financial. As a trainedfamily mediator you will work with spouses and common-law partners who have decided to end their relationships effectively and affordably. Familymediationtraining with RiverdaleMediationis a great first step to becoming a trained and certifiedfamilymediator.

With the Government of Ontario providingfree in-court family mediationandsubsidized out-of-court family mediation, the demand for skilled and well-trained family mediators has never been greater.There is more opportunity for those providing professionalfamily dispute resolution(FDR) services (also calledAlternative Dispute Resolution, ADR) than ever before.

At the same time, because many professionals are seeking to becomefamilymediators, it is important to find the bestfamilymediation training for you, and also to have a career plan before you commit to the course of study required to become an accredited or certified familymediator.

OurFamilyMediationTrainingProgramis Comprehensive, Accessible and Innovative! And we offer Internships through our Mediator-In-Training (MIT)Program.

Taking powerfulfamilymediationtraining with us at Riverdale will give you valuable and marketable skills that you can immediately put to use. OurFamilyMediationTrainingProgram includes the entire suite of courses required forCertificationor Accreditation as afamilymediator in Ontario (Family law, Screening for Power Imbalances and FamilyViolence,FamilyRelations, and Basic and AdvancedFamilyMediationTheory and Skills.) Successful candidates are also often successful in obtaining necessary experience, supervised by experienced mediators, in our acclaimedMediator-In-Training (MIT)Program,or with otherprograms.

And we now offer ourentireprogramusing a user-friendly Learning Management System (LMS) that allows our students to take our courses on their own time. Our students learn the theory in lectures from industry leaders, engage in interactive quizzes and exercises, and benefit from live-coached sessions with leading mediators as their seminar leaders.

All students must achieve a passing grade on all quizzes and tests and must achieve at least a ‘satisfactory’ review from their seminar leaders before receiving a course or programcertificate. Attendance at all scheduled seminars is mandatory; the rest of the course can be taken online on the learner’s schedule.

Why is Family Mediation in Such Demand?

Upwards of 50 percent of those in family court are Self-Represented Litigants (SRLs). These are often people who have either run out of money to pay a family law lawyer or never had money to pay a family law lawyer in the first place. Their challenge is to reach a satisfactory resolution on the major and often complex issues in separation: child custody, child access, child support, spousal support, and division of net family property.

And navigating the court system, especially post-Covid-19, is enormously difficult and time-consuming.

The stark reality remains:Canada’s court system was designed for lawyers, not lay people. Those who represent themselves infamily court, even with the amazing, free supports available throughFamilyLaw Information Centres, theNational Self-Represented Litigants Project, and many more resources, are often disadvantaged both procedurally and in their outcomes as a result.

We also know that the adversarial legal system can, in some cases, enhance the risk of coercive controlling violence in high-risk cases. Because of the emphasis in our training on identifying, assessing and managing risk in familymediation, we believe that effectivefamilymediationthat includes safety planning can enhance safety for families at this critical time.

Familymediationis a good process for many separating couples who want an efficient, timely, informed and low-cost resolution of their disputes.

Our training is designed to give you the knowledge, skills, experience and tools to meet these challenges, competently and professionally.

As a well-trainedfamilymediator, you will have the confidence that you can help couples settle theirfamilylaw matters effectively. Qualityfamilymediationtraining from RiverdaleMediationwill also equip you with the best practices and highest standards, resulting in a more successful practice with a lower risk of client complaints or professional mistakes.

Family Mediation Training Gives you the Skills to Help Couples, Families and Children

Why do so many married and common-law couples who have decided to end their marriages and relationships want to work with family mediators?

Becausemediationis aprocess of self-determination,separating couples can keep control over theirmediationprocess in a way that they cannot in court or other processes such asfamilyarbitration.

Mediationis voluntary in Ontariofamilylaw, giving mediators and their clients the ability to design afamilymediationthat will work best for them.

Secondly,mediationis private and confidentialin most cases, unlike court, where all records are generally public. This means that anyone can search the court file and read everything in it.

Third,familymediationis generally faster than court, and it is also often less expensive than going to court or negotiating through lawyers.

With the opportunity to become afamilymediator comes a professional responsibility to“do no harm.”FDR professionals often work with the most vulnerable people—those without lawyers, those whose languages or cultures are not fully understood or even recognized, those at risk offamilyviolence, or those coping with mental and physical health challenges.

Today’sfamilymediators work in a fast-moving and sophisticated legal and emotional environment. They need to understand the use of technology and to offer their clients efficient, seamless, secure and professional processes.

And they need to be good at what they do. The most effectivefamilymediators are problem-solvers who guide separating couples through the complexities of divorce in a focused and caring way. Theirmediationtraining must be designed to help them meet these challenges successfully…. something we take seriously in the design of all of our courses.

Family Mediation Training with Riverdale Mediation Prepares you for Certification

Although our students put our training to use in many ways, most are seeking to become accredited or certified as an FDR (Family Dispute Resolution) professional with one of Ontario’s four professional certifying organizations.

Riverdale Mediation has an enviable reputation among our alumni, our current students and our peers as being second to none, for both our Family Mediation Certificate and our internships (MIT program).

The starting point for anyone seeking to become a trained and certified family mediator is to visit the websites of the certifying organizations, which will provide you with the most reliable information about their membership as well as certification options and requirements.

In Ontario, there are four organizations that grant certification:

  1. The Ontario Association of Family Mediation(OAFM)
  2. The ADR Institute of Ontario(ADRIO)
  3. Family Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario(FDRIO)
  4. Family Mediation Canada (FMC)

Riverdale Mediation’s family mediation training is designed to meet the requirements for Ontario certification with OAFM, ADRIO and FDRIO.

Why take Family Mediation Training with Riverdale Mediation?

RiverdaleMediationhas trained many hundreds ofmediationstudents since 2001, many of whom now operate successfulfamilymediationpractices across Canada and internationally.

We are experiencedfamilymediators ourselves, with active professional practices. Our extensive experience helps us understand what you need to know to become a greatfamilymediator.

Our innovativeLearning Management Systemallows our students to attend all lectures on their own time, and to engage in dynamic and relevant seminars and coached role-play sessions led by seasoned familymediators.

All of our courses are tested, meaning our graduates have confidence that they have learned what they need to succeed.

Our highly experienced teaching and coaching teamwill work hard, one-on-one, with you to ensure you learn the skills you need. We provide real and meaningful feedback and coaching. We work with professional actors for quality role playing experience in our more advanced trainings.

We started as a small shop in theRiverdale neighbourhoodof Toronto, the setting of theCanadian Broadcasting Corporation’s(CBC) landmark television seriesDegrassi Junior Highfrom 1987 to 1989. Importantly, the series was well known for dealing with critical societal issues including divorce, child abuse, drug abuse, teenage pregnancy,familyviolence, homophobia, cultural differences and racism—all issues thatfamilymediators must confront on a regular basis.

Today, ourfamilymediationtraining is acclaimed for its dynamic and practical content, its accessible delivery and its innovative design. It is also a good choice for professionals who are not able to commit the time needed to studyfamilymediationat a university or community college.

Dynamic, Extensive Mediator-In-Training (MIT) Program

OurMITProgramoffers students broad exposure to the diverse field offamilymediation. Our MIT students work withfamilymediators who arefamilylawyers or mental health professionals, both in the court-connected context and in private practice. MITs work on cases involving parenting plans, child support, spousal support, income determination, relocation, property valuation and division, business valuations and marriage contracts. Our structuredprogramof supervision, co-mediationandmediation, with intensive coaching and feedback, offers our MITs an outstanding experience that meets or exceeds the requirements of thefamilymediationcertificationorganizations.

As an independent training organization, we have the flexibility to constantly create newmediationtraining content and methods to meet the evolving needs of ourmediationstudents.

Importantly, RiverdaleMediationhasearned a reputation among our students and hundreds of alumni for being a leader infamilymediationtraining in Toronto, Ontario, as well as across Canada and internationally.

We seek to:

  • Give you the training you need to practicefamilymediationwith excellence
  • Equip you to meet the highest professional and ethical standards
  • Help you know how to build and grow a successfulfamilymediationpractice
  • Infuse you with our enthusiasm for and love offamilydispute resolution and
  • Provide training to the standards of each Ontario certifying organization.
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