Serena was founded in 1955 by Gilles and Rita Breault from Lachine Quebec (Montreal area). They soon realized that couples in their community were also in need of this same knowledge to plan their family in a way that respected their values. By 1964 approximately 30 teams were delivering much-needed family planning education in regions in Quebec. Financial support by Health Canada for natural family planning contributed to Serena’s growth in the following decades.
Serena organizations were incorporated in Ontario in 1971, in Alberta, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island in 1972, in Saskatchewan, British Columbia and Newfoundland by 1974, and Manitoba and the Yukon by 1977. The national Serena Canada corporation was established in 1974 and is registered with Corporations Canada and in the Province of Ontario. Today, Serena corporations are volunteer-led, relying on a network of volunteers and other supporters to make teaching available on a non-profit basis.
While Serena teaching originated within the Catholic natural family planning movement and many teaching couples volunteer because of alignment with their own religious values, Serena is committed to making STM and NFP education affordable and accessible regardless of religious affiliation. The Serena teaching core content is science-based, and suitable for a variety of contexts with aligned spiritual, environmental or natural health values and needs.