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We are mindful of our clients’ financial situation and can help tailor a treatment or educational plan accordingly. Clients can fund services through a number of channels, including:

  • Extended health care benefits
  • Government supports or tax credits
  • Charitable funding
  • OHIP via Community Care Access Centre (CCAC)

Many of our clients access one or more of the following sources of funding to fund their child’s therapy and save for their future.

Federal Government Programs

Canada Revenue Agency: Persons with Disabilities

People with disabilities may be eligible for financial assistance from Canada Revenue Agency, including the Disability Tax Credit and the Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP).

Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP)

If you are a Canadian resident who qualifies for the Disability Tax Credit (Disability Amount), you may also be eligible to open a Registered Disability Savings Plan and receive money from the Government of Canada in the form of grants and bonds to help you save for the future.

Provincial Government Programs – Ontario

Assistive Devices Program (ADP)

The objective of the Assistive Devices Program (ADP) is to provide consumer centered support and funding to Ontario residents who have long-term physical disabilities and to provide access to personalized assistive devices appropriate for the individual’s basic needs.

Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities (ACSD)

The ACSD program, (once called the Handicapped Children’s Benefit, or HCB), helps parents with some of the extra costs of caring for a child with a disability. The Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities is funded by the Ontario Ministry of Children and Youth Services. This program provides financial help for parents caring for a child with a severe disability.

Ministry of Children and Youth Services: Programs and Services for Children with Autism

Depending on how severe your child’s disorder is, your doctor or psychologist may refer you to a regional autism service provider for autism intervention services. These services are funded by the Ministry of Children and Youth Services.

  • Direct Funding Option (DFO), Ontario Ministry of Children and Youth Services
    We at Children’s Support by LifeWorks provide services for families who have chosen the Direct Funding Option (DFO) through the Ontario Ministry of Children and Youth Services Autism Intervention Program. We work closely with a psychologist who is approved to work with children who have chosen the Direct Funding Option.

Ontario Disability Support

This program is funded by the Ontario Ministry of Community and Social Services. It provides financial aid to people with disabilities and helps pay for living expenses such as food and housing.

Special Services at Home (SSAH)

Funded the Ontario Ministry of Children and Youth Services, this program helps families caring for a child with a developmental or physical disability. The purpose of this program is to help families care for children with developmental disabilities in their own home and community. Your family may qualify for financial assistance to help pay for special services in or outside the family home as long as the child is not receiving support from a residential program.


Canadian Tire Jumpstart

Whether it’s the chance to try a sport for the very first time or to continue with a favourite physical activity, Canadian Tire Jumpstart makes it possible for all kids to participate. We see it as equipping kids for life because quality physical activity in kids does more than improve health and well-being. It helps build confidence, leadership, productivity and creativity.

Easter Seals

Easter Seals provides programs and services to children and youth with physical disabilities across Ontario, with an aim toward helping them achieve greater independence, accessibility and integration. This charity also provides financial assistance for a range of assistive devices and therapeutic/medical equipment.

For the Love of a Child

For The Love of A Child is a charitable organization helping kids in Durham Region, Ontario, dedicated to improving the lives of children with special needs and their families. Having a child with special needs changes a person’s life forever. The mental, physical, and financial strain can devastate families. The goal of this organization is to alleviate some of the financial burden, and make a difference in the life of a child.

Jennifer Ashleigh Children’s Charity

The mission of this charity is to help as many children and families as possible with a range of diagnoses.


Through PAL Assist, THREE TO BE has two funding initiatives that allow parents to apply for support. The programs include: Respite Program (parent and family respite) and a Fee Subsidy Program – designed to respond directly to the here and now needs of our families, as well as enhance the degree to which they are nurtured and supported within our community.

Financial Planning

Henson Trusts

A Henson Trust is a trust created to benefit a person with a disability. It ensures that a person with a disability cannot be cut off from benefits if they’re receiving money from a trust created to help them. The trust requires that the designated trustee have complete control over financial disbursements from the trust.

Special Needs Planning Group

This organization provides financial planning information and solutions for individuals and families of people with disabilities. They’re a great resource on Henson Trusts and the Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP).

More on the RDSP  – Helping Canadians with disabilities and their families save for the future

If you are a Canadian resident who qualifies for the Disability Tax Credit (Disability Amount), you may also be eligible to open a Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP) and receive money from the Government of Canada in the form of grants and bonds to help you save for the future.

The RDSP is a long-term savings plan that must be opened before the end of the calendar year in which you turn 59. Earnings accumulate tax-free until money is taken out of the RDSP*. There is no limit to how much you may contribute each year, but there is a lifetime contribution limit of $200,000. Parents or guardians may open an RDSP for a child under the age of majority. With written permission from the RDSP holder, anyone may contribute to the RDSP. To help you or a loved one save, the Government of Canada will pay the following into your RDSP:

  • Matching grants of up to $3,500 per year, depending on the amount contributed and your family income. The maximum government grant contribution is $70,000 over your lifetime. Matching grants are available until the end of the calendar year in which you turn 49.
  • Bonds of up to $1,000 per year for low-income and modest-income beneficiaries. No contributions are necessary to receive the bond. The maximum government bond contribution is $20,000 over your lifetime. If you qualify, bonds will be paid into your RDSP until the end of the calendar year in which you turn 49.

Money paid out of an RDSP does not affect eligibility for other federal benefits such as the Canada Child Tax Benefit, the Goods and Services Tax credit, Old Age Security or Employment Insurance. Also, all provinces and territories have exempted RDSP income and assets—either in part or in full—for the purpose of assessing eligibility for provincial and territorial programs and services.

The RDSP, the grant and the bond are available to Canadians across the country through participating financial institutions.

For a list of participating financial institutions, and for more information on the RDSP, the grant and the bond:

Call: 1 800 O-Canada (1-800-622-6232)

TTY: 1-800-926-9105



*Investment income earned in an RDSP may be exempt from tax if it is withdrawn from a plan that was opened through a financial organization on reserve. However, grants and bonds remain taxable. Please contact the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) at 1-800-959-8281 for more information.

Steps to open a Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP)

  1. Identify the beneficiary (the person who will benefit from the RDSP)

    The beneficiary must:

    • be under 60 years old (if 59, you must apply before the end of the calendar year in which the beneficiary turns 59);
      be a Canadian resident;
    • have a Social Insurance Number (SIN) (see #3 below); and
    • be eligible for the Disability Tax Credit (see #4 below).
  2. Identify the plan holder(s) (the person who will manage the RDSP)

    • For beneficiaries under the age of majority, the holder can be a legal parent, legal representative or public department.
    • For beneficiaries who have reached the age of majority, they will generally manage their own RDSP. However, in certain circumstances a legal guardian, legal representative or public department may manage it for them.
    • For adult beneficiaries who do not have a legal representative and haven’t opened an RDSP due to concerns about their ability to enter into a contract, the list of people who may be holders has been expanded until the end of 2016. A spouse, common-law partner or parent can open an RDSP on their behalf. If you have questions, call a participating financial organization.
    • The holder must have a Social Insurance Number (see #3 below).
  3. Apply for a Social Insurance Number

    • Apply for a SIN at any Service Canada Centre. To find the nearest service centre near you:
    • You need to provide a primary document to apply for a SIN. A primary document is an official document that proves your identity and status in Canada. Service Canada needs to see an original of your primary document. If the name on this document is different from the name you currently use, you will also need to provide a supporting document.
    • Visit the Social Insurance Number webpage for additional information, including what you can show as a primary or supporting documents: or call 1-800-206-7218 (option 3)
  4. Apply for the Disability Tax Credit Certificate

    • Complete Form T2201 Disability Tax Credit Certificate from Canada Revenue Agency. To get a copy, call 1-800-387-1193 (TTY 1-800-665-0354) or visit
    • A qualified practitioner must complete the second part of T2201 and certify that the potential beneficiary has a severe and prolonged impairment.
    • Form T2201 must be returned to the Canada Revenue Agency only.
  5. Apply for the Canada Child Tax Benefit if beneficiary is under 18

    • In order to determine the child’s family income, the parent, legal guardian must apply for the Canada Child Tax Benefit on behalf of the minor child by calling 1-800-387-1193 (TTY 1-800-665-0354) or visiting
  6. File an income tax return

    • In order to maximize grant and be able to access the bond, the beneficiary (or parent/legal guardian/qualifying family member) needs to file their income taxes for a minimum of the last two years or for all the years that retroactive bonds/grants are being claimed.
    • Obtain forms to file for income tax by calling CRA at 1-800-959-8281 or (TTY) 1-800-665-0354.
  7. Contact a financial organization to open an RDSP and apply for the bond and the grant

    • Call one of the following financial organizations which offer the RDSP:
      • BMO Bank of Montreal 1-800-665-7700 (General line)
      • Bank of Nova Scotia 1-877-929-4499 (General line)
      • Central 1 Credit Union 1-800-661-6813 ext. 5358 (General line)
      • Central 1 Trust Co. 1-800-661-6813 ext. 5358 (General line)
      • CIBC Securities Inc. 1-800-465-3863 ext. 2 (RDSP line)
      • Desjardins Trust 1-877-286-3420 ext. 3 (RDSP line)
      • Global Growth Assets 1-866-680-4734 (General line)
      • Investors Group 1-888-746-6344 (General line)
      • Fonds d’investissement FMOQ 1-800-641-9929 (General-Quebec residents)
      • Mackenzie Financial 1-800-387-0614 ext. 3 (RDSP line)
      • The RBC Royal Bank 1-800-668-3663 (General line)
      • TD Canada Trust/Waterhouse 1-866-222-3456 ext. 3 (RDSP line)
    • Or find links to their websites by visiting:
    • Each organization opens plans differently. Ask your organization how to apply (i.e. in person or over the phone)

Other things to consider

  • Some questions to ask a financial organization:

    • How can I open an RDSP: In person? Telephone?
    • Are joint plan holders permitted?
    • Are disability assistance payments permitted?
    • What investment options are available?
    • Are there any fees associated with the plan?
    • How much are transfer fees if I choose to move to another financial organization?
  • Update your Will/Estate Plans

    • You may want to consider revising your estate plans to ensure that your RDSP and any other assets are handled according to your wishes in the event of incapacity or death.