Grandview Kids Online Parent Support Group
Our Family Engagement Team moderates three Online Parent Support (OPS) pages, available on Facebook. The Team is comprised of caregivers to Grandview clients and former clients (grads), who use their lived experience and specialized training to support others in their journey.
The online support pages are for caregivers by caregivers, offering at-your-fingertip access to peer support, networking and resource sharing.
There are three online support groups you may be eligible to join:
- OPS: This is a general page, available to all Grandview families. Go to facebook.com/groups/Grandview.OPS. Then click on “Join Group” near the top right-hand corner.
- TAPS – Transition Adolescent Parent Support Group: This is a page for caregivers to youth, aged 15 or older, who are transitioning from childhood to adulthood health or social services. Go to www.facebook.com/groups/grandviewtaps/. Then click on “Join Group” near the top right-hand corner.
- OAP Info: This group is a forum to share information and resources with families to help navigate the OAP (Ontario Autism Program) and Grandview’s Autism Services. It is offered as a Foundational Family Service. Providing an OAP number is required to join this group. Go to https://www.facebook.com/groups/oap.info/. Then click on “Join Group” near the top right-hand corner.
You must have a Facebook account to join these groups. They are closed (non-public forums). Anyone can request to join the group, but only those verified as parents/guardians of Grandview Kids will be approved to join by the Group Administrator.
You can speed up the approval process by sending an email to the Group Administrator (firstname.lastname@example.org) asking them for permission to join the group. You should never include personal health information in these messages. If you are looking for additional help from our Family Engagement Team, please reach out to the email above.
“We want to thank you for the excellent presentation to our son’s class. He was thrilled, as was his brother and all of their classmates. The customized storybook you prepared was ‘bang on’ and targeted the concerns our son had [about the way his disability is perceived by peers] most appropriately. We plan to use it every year from now on to share with each classroom teacher. Your kindness, compassion and understanding of children with special needs is much appreciated in how you met with us and our son to learn about him and our family, and in how well you conducted the presentation to his class.”– Grandview Kids Parent
Compliments and complaints
We want to hear from you!
Grandview Kids welcomes compliments and complaints from clients, caregivers and visitors. We have created a form to collect your feedback and encourage you to scan the QR code below to complete it.
Click here to share your feedback with us.
COVID-19 vaccine resources for families
Resources for parents and caregivers
Review these resources to help understand what you can do to address common concerns regarding vaccination.
- Government of Canada Vaccines for children: COVID-19
- Sick Kids COVID-19 Learning Hub
- University of Waterloo COVID-19 mRNA Vaccines for children
- Improving the vaccination experience: A guide for parents and caregivers – the CARD System
- Needle pokes: Reducing pain with comfort positions and distraction
Resources for caregivers and children
Review these resources with your child to prepare them for their COVID-19 vaccine.
- Grandview Kids – COVID-19 Vaccine Checklist
- Grandview Kids – COVID-19 Vaccine Social Story
- Ontario Association of Children’s Aid Societies – Max the Vax
Get your questions answered
Talk to your healthcare provider to get your specific questions about the COVID-19 vaccine answered. You can also contact the following agencies for support.
Listed below are several available organizations to help families cover the cost of various equipment and services needs. Each organization has specific guidelines and policies that should be reviewed before applying. Families should be encouraged to contact their insurance companies before seeking additional funding.
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.
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.
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 Kids 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.
- 211 – a three-digit phone number and website that provides information and referral to community and social services in Ontario. Certified Information and Referral Specialists are caring, understanding and knowledgeable, and pride themselves on their ability to connect you with the services you need
- Community Living Ontario – a non-profit, provincial association that advocates for people who have an intellectual disability to be fully included in all aspects of community life
- Durham Behaviour Management Services – consultation for parents and professionals regarding positive behavioural supports for children age 2 to 12; also provides toileting resources
- Durham Immigration Portal – a one-stop, community-based immigration resource designed to welcome and support new Canadians in Durham Region
- Lake Ridge Community Support Services – Applied Behaviour Analysis services for individuals living in Durham Region with a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder or Intellectual Disability
- Resources for Exceptional Children and Youth – Durham Region – offering a range of services for children and youth age 0 to 18 years of age with a variety of needs, including case management services and assistance to families facing complex challenges
- Rose of Durham – a day program that offers services and supports to young parents and their babies, including counselling, prenatal classes and workshops
- Women’s Multicultural Resource & Counselling Centre of Durham (WMRCC) – an agency dealing with issues of violence against multicultural women, immigrant and refugee women in the Durham Region. The organization’s aim is to provide culturally sensitive services to women, youth and children from diverse backgrounds.
Equipment and Equipment Donations
Grandview Kids is only able to accept a very limited amount of donated adapted toys. We are not able to accept items such as:
- bath equipment
- adapted strollers
If you have equipment that you think another family could use, we encourage you to create your own flyer (include a picture and description of the equipment with your contact information) and post it on our “parent information” bulletin board in the waiting room at our Oshawa – Main site or Ajax site. Other options for equipment you no longer need:
- For the Needy – Not the Greedy – They supply a wide variety of medical equipment and assistive devices to individuals or organizations in need, when resources are available. The organization has been able to donate wheelchairs, walkers, operating tables, syringes, food supplements, infrared wheelchair for a blind person, alcohol swabs, etc.
- Canadian Red Cross – Children’s Medical Equipment Recycling & Loan Service (CMERLS) > as of December 2012, the Durham Region branch is currently only accepting adaptive equipment for adults.
- Freecycle Durham Region – all items posted online are “recycled” for free.
- Kijiji – local online classified ads.
- Zach’s List – online paediatric equipment exchange source. Click the link to request to join the ZachsList Pediatric Equipment Exchange closed Facebook Group
*Please note that Grandview Kids does not endorse these organizations.
Funding for Recreation & Sports
- 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.
- Their Opportunity – Their Opportunity exists to support under serviced families with the means to enroll their children into local sports and recreation programs, and hosting a unique Giveback Program where children receiving funding are required to “pay it forward” within their community.
Government Programs and Services
Medical and Health Services
- Dental Professionals Tool Kit – guide designed by Autism Speaks for dental professionals to help reduce children’s anxiety levels and increase compliance. The Tool Kit provides general and specific information that may help dental professionals better serve the needs of children with special needs.
- Eye See…Eye Learn® – provides comprehensive eye exams by local Doctors of Optometry to junior kindergarten students in Durham Region. The eye exams are covered under OHIP when you show your child’s health card so there is no out-of-pocket cost for the eye exam. If the child requires a pair of glasses, they will receive a free pair donated by Nikon Lenswear, OGI and your participating Doctor of Optometry. Apply by June 30.
- Healthy Smiles Ontario – a program for children 17 and under who do not have access to any form of dental coverage; if eligible, your children will receive regular dental services at no cost to you
- Medical Decision Aid – families often struggle with making the decision of whether medication use is right for their child; this guide published by Autism Speaks is designed to help parents clarify their values and goals and then talk with their healthcare provider about the options, benefits, and possible downsides of medications. This tool kit can be used at any point in the decision-making process, including the re-evaluation of medications your child is now taking.
- AbilityOnline – a free, monitored and secure online community that welcomes kids, teens and young adults of all abiltiies. Find a friend or be a friend to someone just like you. Separate sections for different age groups and specialized tools help address additional transitional needs and challenges. Parents and professionals are welcome too.
- ConnectAbility – a website organized by age group and built for people with a developmental disability and their support networks
- Networking with parents/guardians of children with special needs
Parenting children with special needs
- BLOOM – Parenting Kids with Disabilities – Parenting a child with a disability presents unique challenges and rewards not often addressed in mainstream parenting literature. On the BLOOM blog, Louise Kinross, writer and editor of BLOOM for Holland Bloorview Kids Rehab in Toronto, sensitively selects and shares articles from parents and professionals in childhood disability treatment
- Today’s Parent – Special Needs Parenting – Anchel Krishna is from the Toronto area. Her daughter, Syona, was diagnosed with cerebral palsy just before her first birthday. Read each week as Anchel blogs about the everyday extraordinary: the regularity/commonalities moms and dads of special needs kids share with parents of “typically developing children,” and the exceptionalities that are truly part of each day.
- EarlyON Child and Family Centres – EarlyON Child and Family Centres provide opportunities for children from birth to six years of age to participate in play and inquiry-based programs and support parents and caregivers in their roles. These centres offer safe and welcoming environments open to all families across the Durham Region, with qualified professionals and quality programs. Families and caregivers will be able to find support, make personal connections and access a network of resources.
Planning for your Child’s Future
- Partners for Planning – a non-profit organization started by and for families with a relative with a disability. Providing support, seminars, and resources to help families create a good life and a safe, secure future for their loved ones.
- Planned Lifetime Networks is a resource from the Ontario Adult Autism Research and Support Network
- Planning for your child’s future
- Community Integration through Cooperative Education (CICE) – the modified CICE program at Durham College is designed for individuals with intellectual disabilities or significant learning challenges who can benefit from the opportunity to build confidence, gain independence and enjoy the college experience first-hand by learning at their own pace in programs such as Early Childhood Education, Hospitality Management and Fitness and Health Promotion.
Provincial Association for Children’s Treatment Centres (CTCs) – Paediatric Rehabilitation
- Empowered Kids Ontario (EKO)
Provincial Resources – Medical Services
Autism Ontario – Durham Region
A non-profit organization dedicated to ensuring that every individual with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is provided with the means to achieve a quality of life as a respected member of society.
Autism Speaks Canada
North America’s largest autism science and advocacy organization, dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention and treatments for autism, increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders, and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families.
Geneva Centre for Autism
Empowers individuals with an Autism Spectrum Disorder and their families to fully participate in their communities by providing training, resources and support.
Since 1974 Kerry’s Place has been creating and providing evidence-based supports and services across the province of Ontario that enhance the quality of life of those with ASD. Kerry’s Place is one of the only organizations in the country that serves the entire life span of those with ASD.
Canadian National Institute for the Blind
Provides real, sustainable help to Canadians who are blind or partially sighted by offering various programs and services.
Ontario Brain Injury Association
A provincial not-for-profit, charitable organization enhancing the lives of Ontarians living with the effects of acquired brain injury (ABI) through education, awareness and support. Services include information and resources, a toll-free helpline, personal advocacy and support, and training and education for families and professionals.
Cerebral Palsy Group
Cerebral Palsy Group is an online resource for anyone who has been affected by cerebral palsy, birth injuries, or brain injuries.The group was created to provide answers and all types of assistance needed to help improve the quality of life for loved ones and family members with cerebral palsy.
A research-based initiative designed to improve the care of cerebral palsy from prevention to treatment.
Ontario Federation for Cerebral Palsy
A non-profit charitable organization that addresses the needs of people with cerebral palsy and other physical disabilities, through the provision of services and programs, advocating and promoting awareness, and encouraging and supporting research and education.
Opening the Door for Children with Cerebral Palsy
A booklet published by Grandview Kids for families of Grandview Kids affected by cerebral palsy.
S.O.F.T. – Support Organization for Trisomy 18, 13 and any other disorder which produces serious, multiple birth defects
A nonprofit volunteer organization offering support for parents who have had a child with a chromosome disorder, and education to families and professionals interested in the care of these children. Durham Region chapter: 905-579-9215
Unique: Understanding chromosome disorders
A source of information and support to families and individuals affected by any rare chromosome disorder, and to the professionals who work with them
Deaf or Hearing Impairment
VOICE for Hearing Impaired Children
The mission of VOICE is to ensure that all hearing impaired children have the right to develop their ability to listen and speak and have access to services which will enable them to listen and speak. They develop and implement programs and services in parent support, public education, auditory-verbal therapy program and advocacy.
Canadian Down Syndrome Society (CDSS)
A national organization whose mission is to enhance the quality of life for all individuals who have Down Syndrome through advocacy, education and providing information.
Down Syndrome Association of Toronto
A charitable, non-profit organization, created by parents to provide a network for parents, create a positive image, and ensure the availability of services to all persons with Down syndrome.
Durham Down Syndrome Association
A non-profit registered charitable organization that acts as a resource for health, education and professionals to support families and other interested persons working to improve life for individuals with Down syndrome in Durham Region.
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Ontario Network of Expertise is a Canadian federally-incorporated non-profit organization providing support, information, and advocacy.
Learning Disabilities Association of Ontario
Provides leadership in learning disabilities advocacy, research, education and services and strives to advance the full participation of children, youth and adults with learning disabilities in today’s society.
Muscular Dystrophy Association of Canada
Provides relevant and current information about many types of neuromuscular disorders, as well as assistance obtaining necessary equipment through loans and/or funding. Durham Region Chapter: 905-721-0380
Ontario Prader-Willi Syndrome Association
The Ontario Prader-Willi Syndrome Association (OPWSA) is a non-profit, charity which was established in 1982. Their mission is to enhance the quality of life for individuals with Prader-Willi syndrome. Prader-Willi Syndrome Durham Chapter: 905-427-7256
Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus Association of Canada
The Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus Association of Canada strives to be the leading national voluntary health organization, setting the standard for education, public awareness, and research of spina bifida and hydrocephalus. They aspire to reduce the incidence of spina bifida and hydrocephalus and to promote the independence of people living with spina bifida and hydrocephalus.
Spinal Cord Injury
Canadian Paraplegic Association of Ontario
Assists persons with spinal cord injuries and other physical disabilities to achieve independence, self-reliance and community participation. They offer support, counselling, advocacy and information services.
Tuberous Sclerosis Canada (TSC)
Dedicated to the principles of providing encouragement and support to individuals and their families diagnosed with Tuberous Sclerosis Complex (TSC); raising public awareness and educating our communities of TSC; and to promote and support research aimed at the cure for TSC and/or control of Tuberous Sclerosis symptoms.
Diagnosis Information and Resources
A free, monitored and secure online community that welcomes kids, teens and young adults of all abilities. Find a friend or be a friend to someone just like you! Separate sections for different age groups and specialized tools help address transitional needs and challenges. This site also provides many useful links related to a variety of disabilities. Parents and professionals welcome.
Rapid Access to Mental Health and Addictions Services in the Durham Region
Please click here to access the complete list of services in PDF format.
Recreation and Sports
- Abilities Centre – located in Whitby: a fully accessible, state-of-the-art multi-purpose 125,000 square foot facility committed to the development of an inclusive and integrated environment for people of all ages and abilities; facility offers 3 full regulation basketball courts, 200-metre six-lane track, cardio/fitness, weight room, and sensory rooms; programs include sports, recreation, drama, music, art, and life skills
- All Abilities League – Oshawa Kicks Soccer Club – an inclusive, soccer-based program for children, youth and adults with physical and/or intellectual disabilities encouraging fun and fitness with engaging activities that promote independence and self-confidence enabling athletes to develop physically, socially, and personally within a fun, soccer-focused team environment.
- Born This Way Dance Inclusion Program – The Dance Inclusion program takes place in Oshawa and supports dancers of all abilities. At the dance studio, parents and guardians are encouraged to stay and watch the class through the large viewing window, where they will meet other parents whom they can form a connection with. Each week’s class costs $9.75, and registration is ongoing throughout the year. They have three options of classes based on age for dancers on Sunday afternoons.
- Little Movers is a class designed for dancers ages seven years old and younger; in this class, the dancers explore movement songs and dance activities while an emphasis is placed on having fun.
- Beginner Movement is a class for dancers ages eight to thirteen and explores some basic foundations of dance and movement songs and supports dancers in making friendships.
- Exploration of Dance for Teens and Adults is an individualized dance class that explores many styles while having fun and creating connections in the community.
- Challenge League Sports – special sports for unique players in Durham Region
- Durham Attack Recreational Volleyball – contact Lawrence Flynn at email@example.com for information about their free sitting volleyball drop-in program on Friday nights for age 10 and over
- Durham Rowing Club – located in Port Perry: adaptive rowing program; participants must be able to swim and follow instructions
- Ontario Wheelchair Sports Association – dedicated to the development and promotion of athlete-centred, amateur wheelchair sport programs
- ParaEquestrian Canada – information about para-equestrian including therapeutic riding, competitive para-dressage sport and more
- ParaSport Ontario – learn how to get involved in parasport as an athlete, coach, official, classifier, guide or club volunteer
- Therapeutic Recreation at Grandview Kids – a variety of programs and activities offered for children and youth up to age 19 with special needs; available at various times and locations throughout the year
- Ultimate Canadian Cheer – co-ed cheerleading team open to athletes of all ages; practices in Pickering, competitions throughout the GTA
- Variety Village – located in Scarborough: fitness facility dedicated to improving the quality of life of all people, regardless of their abilities; offers specialized programs and services without barriers, intimidation or other obstacles
- Wake Robin Farm – located in Uxbridge: offers para-equestrian and therapeutic horseback riding
- Wheelchair Tennis – interactive map listing contact information for wheelchair tennis programs in Canada; facilitated by Tennis Canada
- Whitby Yacht Club – sailing programs run from June to September and are fully adapted for any ability
- WindReach Farm – located in Ashburn: offers therapeutic horseback riding; the facility is designed to meet the needs of individuals with a variety of disabilities and includes fully wheelchair accessible pathways, trails, buildings, barns, stables; welcomes both the special needs and able-bodied communities
- Transitions from Starting School to Adulthood – resources from Easter Seals Ontario
- Disability Travel Cards from Easter Seals Ontario