There are two Ontario-funded programs that assist in providing families and caregivers with a break from the demands of day-to-day care.  

Out-of-home respite is funded for up to 7 days per year for children with multiple special needs. 

Who is eligible?
A child must be less than 18 years of age, have multiple special needs because of a physical/developmental disability, and live at home, requiring 24-hour care.

What is this funding for?
The intent of this funding is to reduce the possibility of a child requiring a long-term residential placement, keep families healthy and intact, and reduce the likelihood of a child harming self or others.

The second type of respite funding is Enhance Respite Funding.  This can provide families with up to $3500 per child, per year.

Who is eligible?
This funding is intended for families caring for children who are medically fragile and/or technology-dependent.  Listed examples include mechanical ventilators, apnea monitor, renal dialysis, urinary catheters, colostomy bags, intravenously-administered drugs, tracheotomy tube care, suctioning, oxygen support or tube feeding.  The child must be under 18 years of age, living at home, and requiring continuous monitoring on a 24-hour basis.

There is also respite funding available for children with an ASD diagnosis through the Ontario Autism Program.

How do I apply?
To apply for respite funding, contact your nearest MCYS regional office.

Learn more about respite providers, support agencies, and training in your local area by visiting  Many districts on this site maintain a database of screened private respite workers, as well as lists of day programs and other resources in the community.