Human Services Certificate Program

The OMSSA Human Services Certificate program is designed for first-line staff, supervisors, and managers in all program areas of human services. The program focuses on the development of knowledge, skills, attitudes, and behaviours in four areas: Service System Management, Human in Human Services, Organizational Management and Wellness and Managing People: Engagement and Capacity Building.

With adult learning principles as a foundation, a series of professional development sessions will quip learners with knowledge and skill application in their current roles as well as future career aspirations. 

Program Learning Outcomes

The program identifies a range of key competencies necessary for staff in human services organizations. Competencies are progressive across two learning paths, grouped under the following learning themes.

Service System Management 

Understand the mandate, roles and responsibilities of Consolidated Municipal Service Manager and District Social Service Administration Boards in the local community. Understand and apply provincial legislation, and provincial and local policy and program mandates and objectives within a person-centric strategy at the core municipal human services programs; social assistance, employment, community housing, homelessness prevention and early learning and childcare.

Human in Human Services

Understanding human conditions and circumstances and their potential impact on human behaviour. Develop an awareness and understanding of systemic racism, anti-oppression, personal bias, Truth and Reconciliation, Indigenous Cultural Competency, inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility, trauma informed care, and apply effective, person-centric responses.  


Develop and awareness of your self-care condition and needs, understand the methodologies and be able to effectively apply them to strengthen your capacity for delivering person-centric, compassionate service.

Organizational Management and Wellness

Understand and apply the organizational tools and strategies for creating and maintaining inclusive, diverse, and welcoming organizations and teams. These include inclusiveness and diversity in the workplace, leadership styles, the multi-generational workplace, change management and team agreements.

Managing Self, People and Capacity Building

Understand and apply strategies to build a strong team, utilize coaching to achieve common outcomes and strategies for developing stakeholder relations with internal, external and community partners to support community capacity building. 

Learning Portfolio and Competency Indicators

Learners will be required to demonstrate knowledge and application of the four program competencies, Service System Management, Human in Human Services, Organizational Management and Wellness and Managing Self, People and Capacity Building through a Learning Portfolio and completion of the Human Services Competency Indicators to receive their Human Services Certificate.

Through Pre-Learning and Post-Learning Assessments, workplace application tools and resources, learners will create their own Human Services Learning Portfolio to document their learning, show progress, demonstrate their competencies, and identify ongoing learning. 

At the conclusion of Path 1, learners will complete the Human Services Competency Indicator, a tool built around the four program competencies for learners to demonstrate further knowledge and application of their learning.  

Path 1, starting April 18, 2023 is a foundational program, providing learners with an introduction to theories, competencies, principles and practices in Human Services.

Path 2 of the program, being released in the fall of 2023, provides further practical application of theories, competencies, principles and practices in Human Services. Anyone who has taken Person-Centric Strategies and two or more courses in the Path 1 curriculum can take the Competency Indicators assessment for Path 2. This assessment will be available in the summer of 2023.

Note: This is an interactive, competency-based program.  Learners are expected to be present, with cameras on, to engage with their peers and facilitators. Sessions will take place using the Zoom platform and will not be recorded.

Register today to start your learning journey

Registration for Path 1 is now closed!

View Path 1 Course Schedule

All sessions will take place virtually using Zoom.

This includes all courses (100 hours of facilitated learning), learning materials, access to OMSSA Education Staff and Facilitators to support and guide ongoing learning, Human Services Certificate.

Contact Christie Herrington, Director of Education for further information or questions at

Cancellation Policy

Requests for refunds will be honoured, less a $200.00 cancellation fee, provided a written notice of cancellation and request for refund is received on or before April 6, 2023. When cancellation is received on or after April 7, 2023, no monies will be refunded. Persons who register but do not attend and fail to provide notice of cancellation are not eligible for a refund. Substitutions will be accepted up to April 14, 2023. OMSSA reserves the right to cancel or change the program without notice.

Technical Requirements

OMSSA will be hosting all the academy sessions using Zoom, an online, interactive platform that you can join straight from your web browser, or by downloading 'Zoom Client for Meetings' on your computer or tablet

Participants will be expected to join the workshop via both video and audio. Participants should therefore have access to a desktop computer, laptop computer or tablet with:

  • a webcam or built-in camera

  • a built-in microphone or a headphone jack where you can plug in a headset or earphones

We strongly recommend that participants use a headset or earphones with a built-in microphone in order to limit background noise. 

System requirements: Click here for more detailed information on system requirements from Zoom.

Path 1

Path 1 is a foundational program, providing learners with an introduction to theories, competencies, principles and practices in Human Services.

Course List

Service System Management

Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Accessibility

Mitigating Bias in the Workplace

Person Centric Strategies for Staff 1

Difficult Conversations and 4-Step Looping

Trauma-Informed Care

Compassion Fatigue

Mental Health First Aid

Introduction to Leadership

Understanding Anxiety and Depression

Introduction to Case Notes and Writing Skills


Path 2

Path 2 provides further practical application of theories, competencies, principles and practices in Human Services. Stay tuned for more information. 

Spring 2023 Course Schedule




April 189:00 - 9:15AMWelcome to the OMSSA Human Services Certificate Program
April 18-199:00AM - 12:00PMService System Management
April 25-269:00AM - 12:00PMInclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accessibility
May 2-39:00AM - 12:00PMMitigating Bias in the Workplace
May 15-18, 24 and 259:00AM - 12:00PMPerson Centric Strategies for Staff 1
May 29-3010:00AM - 12:00PMMaking Difficult Conversations Easier
May 311:00 - 3:00PM4-Step Empathy Loop
June 5-68:30AM - 12:30PM
Mental Health First Aid
June 12-139:00AM - 12:00PMCompassion Fatigue
June 19-229:00AM - 12:00PMTrauma-Informed Care
June 23 and 2610:00AM - 12:00PM
June 2810:00AM - 12:00PMNormalization and Summer Check-In Sessions
July and AugustDate and Time TBDLearner Check-In Sessions
September 18-209:00AM - 12:00PMIntroduction to Leadership
October 16-179:00AM - 12:00PMUnderstanding Anxiety and Depression
October 19, 20, and 2310:00AM - 12:00PM
October 25-269:30AM - 12:00PMIntroduction to Case Notes and Professional Writing
October 31-November 110:00AM - 12:00PMNormalization and Learning Integration

Learn More About Our Facilitators

Catherine Chambers

Bonnie Corey

Dr. JP Gedeon

John Howley and Marianne Seaton

Sharad Kerur

Megan Phillips

Sue Ritchie Raymond

Valerie Spironello

Kirby Steinhoff