Skip to content

Tax Tips

Getting ready to file your Income Tax Return? Graeme Treeby of The Special Needs Planning Group has information that may be of assistance to you. Please note: this information is shared by Grandview Children’s Centre for your convenience; however, it is not to be taken as accounting or tax advice, but rather as a resource to provide a starting point for income tax preparation and planning for people with a disability and their families.

Funding

Listed below are a number of organizations that are available to help families cover the cost of various equipment and services needs. Each organization has specific guidelines & policies that should be reviewed prior to applying. Families should be encouraged to contact their insurance companies first, prior to looking into additional funding. Note: this is a guide only, please verify details with individual organizations.

Home Renovations

Most organizations have very specific policies around this, and all of them expect that the changes being made to the home are a necessity based on the special needs of the child (i.e. not a way to increase the value of the home).

Ontario March of Dimes – Home & Vehicle Modification Program: applicants must complete a screening tool prior to applying. Will also need to provide photos of area, & proof of total household income (cannot exceed $65,000 after deductions) at time of formal application. Maximum funding is $15,000 but awarded amount varies with income.

Presidents Choice Children’s Charity – applicants must write a letter themselves explaining how it will help child & family, provide 3rd party letter & proof of total household income (cannot exceed $70,000 net). Maximum funding is $20,000 but will be awarded based on availability of funds & decision of board.

Easter Seals – currently has no income restrictions, but child must be registered first with Easter Seals (to qualify, must have a physical diagnosis). They have very specific rules regarding which portion of the renovation may be covered. Maximum funding is $3,000 and is awarded based on availability of funds & decision of board. Note also that families are limited to a max. of $3000 per year for all funding and must apply between Jan 1st – Sept. 30th each year.

For the Love of a Child – may be able to provide financial assistance. Absolute max received is around $500, based on availability of funds raised that year.

Muscular Dystrophy Canada (MDC) – must be registered first (to qualify, must have a neuromuscular disorder that has been included by MDA). Some assistance may be available. For details, contact MDA directly at 1-800-567-2873 x 160 or 164. They require 2 quotes and supporting letter from therapist and/or Registered Social Worker

Home Depot – handled by each local store. May be able to provide labour and/or materials to assist families. Contact the store closest to the client for details.

Other – other places that families can look into include local service clubs not included in the Partnership, Wish Organizations, and fundraising initiatives.

Equipment

Ontario March of Dimes – Assistive Devices Program – applicants must be 19 years and older and complete a screening tool prior to applying. Will also need to provide photos of area, & proof of total household income (cannot exceed $65,000 after deductions) at time of formal application

Presidents Choice Children’s Charity – applicants must write a letter themselves explaining how it will help child & family, provide 3rd party letter & proof of total household income (cannot exceed $70,000 net). Maximum funding is $20,000 but will be awarded based on availability of funds & decision of board.

Easter Seals – currently has no income restrictions, but child must be registered first with Easter Seals (to qualify, must have a physical diagnosis). Maximum funding is $3,000 and is awarded based on availability of funds & decision of board. Note also that families are limited to a max. of $3000 per year for all funding and must apply between Jan 1st – Sept. 30th each year.

For the Love of a Child – organization that may be able to provide financial assistance. Absolute max received is around $500, based on availability of funds raised that year. Applications are available in the Social Work Services office, Family Resource Centre or by contacting For the Love of a Child.

Muscular Dystrophy Canada (MDC) must be registered first (to qualify, must have a neuromuscular disorder that has been included by MDC). Some assistance may be available. For details, contact MDC directly at 1-800-567-2873 ext. 160 or 164. They require 2 quotes and supporting letter from therapist and/or Registered Social Worker.

Ontario Federation for Cerebral Palsy – Assistive Devices Funding Program – Available for any child or adult with CP in Ontario. Maximum funding is $2500/yr and cannot exceed 25% of total cost of item. Applications accepted from Sept. 1- June 1 each year. Funding available for communication & writing aids, feeding equipment, orthotic devices, respiratory equipment, mobility aids, bathroom aids & home accessibility aids. See website for specific details.

Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities – may be able to help with some requests such as serial casting, and orthotics. Clients should contact their worker to discuss. Funding assistance reviewed on a case by case basis, and up to the workers discretion.

Other – other places that families can look into include local service clubs not included in the Partnership, Wish Organizations, and fundraising initiatives.

Recreation

Advancing Access to Affordable Recreation in Durham Region – Contact information for municipal and not for profit organizations that may provide financial assistance for registered recreation services and programs for low income residents in Durham Region

Jumpstart Program – A registered charity of Canadian Tire providing funding for recreation opportunities for financially disadvantaged kids.

Ontario Federation for Cerebral Palsy (OFCP) Activity Funding Program –  Available to individuals with cerebral palsy in the province of Ontario who are members of the OFCP.

Vehicle Modifications

Most organizations have very specific policies around this, and all of them expect that the purchase/changes being made to the vehicle are a necessity based on the special needs of the child.

Ontario March of Dimes – Home & Vehicle Modification Program – applicants must complete a screening tool prior to applying. Will also need to provide photos of area, & proof of total household income (cannot exceed $65,000 after deductions) at time of formal application. Maximum funding is $15,000 but awarded amount varies with income.

Presidents Choice Children’s Charity – applicants must write a letter themselves explaining how it will help child & family, provide 3rd party letter & proof of total household income (cannot exceed $70,000 net). Maximum funding is $20,000 but will be awarded based on availability of funds & decision of board.

Easter Seals – currently has no income restrictions, but child must be registered first with Easter Seals (to qualify, must have a physical diagnosis). They may be able to assist with specific equipment needs.  Maximum funding is $3,000 and is awarded based on availability of funds & decision of board. Note also that families are limited to a max. of $3000 per year for all funding and must apply between Jan 1st – Sept. 30th each year.

Muscular Dystrophy Canada – must be registered first (to qualify, must have a neuromuscular disorder that has been included by MDC). Some assistance may be available. For details, contact MDC directly at 1-800-567-2873 ext. 160 or 164. They require 2 quotes and supporting letter from therapist and/or Registered Social Worker.

Other

These organizations are available to assist families with a variety of needs. Each has specific guidelines & policies that should be looked into.

Community Living Associations – may be able to offer some assistance for families already receiving services. Families should contact their child’s therapist or Registered Social Worker directly.

Incontinence Supplies Grant Program – handled by the Easter Seal Society. The program offers family assistance with the extraordinary costs associated with diapering a child with special needs. Applications must be completed & signed by a physician.

Social Services – may be able to assist families with transportation issues. Contact your child’s therapist or Registered Social Worker for details.

The Jennifer Ashleigh Foundation – funding available for children under 21 yrs old, for the following: emergency financial relief, care giving, therapies, education, computers, medical equipment & recreational activities. Funding is based on income, but consideration is given to living expenses.

Three to be – PAL Assist Program –  includes: Respite Program (parent and family respite) and a Fee Subsidy Program designed to respond directly to the needs of families of children with neurological disorders.

Trillium Drug Program Ministry of Health – assists families with the cost of prescription drugs. Families have to pay a deductible first, based on net income, and then would pay a $2 dispensing charge for remaining prescription/year. Families can obtain applications kits at their local pharmacy or by calling the Ministry INFOline @ 1-800-268-1154.

Funding Sources for Private Speech – Language Therapy – Looking for funding information when it comes to private speech- language therapy? This brochure will help answer your questions and get you started.