If you are raising a disabled child, depending on your income and your child’s needs, you might qualify for various financial benefits. For example, my grandchildren all suffered incontinence for years, and in fact two still wear pull- ups at night, while one wears pull-ups both day and night for bowel and urine incontinence. This can be very expensive and, given my limited financial income, I was eligible for an Easter Seals Grant for their daytime (not night time) incontinence. An application to Easter Seals must be filled out and returned, then depending on your child’s needs you might qualify for funds to offset the cost of diapers. You will need to keep all incontinent supply sales receipts as Easter Seals will request to see them from time to time to prove your expense. Easter Seals can provide so much more for people with disabilities. To find out what is available go to www.easterseals.ca
You might also qualify for ODSP (Ontario Disability Support Program) to offset costs of raising children whose needs are greater, and therefore more costly, than those of non-disabled children. An application has to be filed with the Ministry of Community and Social Services which determines your eligibility. Some items you can claim for are: extra loads of laundry re incontinence or soiled clothing; extra bed linen; clothing because of wear and tear; educational toys re development; night time pull-ups for incontinence; specialized camps and programs; etc. ODSP can also help adults with living and housing expenses, and offer employment supports. Your allocated worker will determine your needs and qualifications. See servicecanada.gc.ca for more information.
Also available is DTC (Disability Tax Credit) and CDB (Child’s Disability Benefit) for children with severe disabilities. The CDB is a monthly benefit that the recipient receives along with the Child Tax Benefit. To apply for these benefits, a printable form (T2201) is available on the government website and needs to be completed by your doctor. See servicecanada.gc.ca for more information.
To offset parents’ costs, there is a yearly recreation fee assistance available for recreation programs, or camp, plus a free annual swimming pass. See http://www.hamilton.ca.
For respite funding, see: